Panthers coach Matt Rhule may join players in kneeling during anthem
A few coaches in the NFL have shared that they’d be open to kneeling during the national anthem and Matt Rhule is the latest. The new head coach of the Carolina Panthers said that there’s a chance he joins his players in kneeling during the anthem next season.
In a Zoom conference call on Thursday, Rhule said that he’d “consider anything” when it came to supporting his Panthers players in 2020:
“I would consider anything as we move forward … ’m supportive of the cause. I’m supportive of the movement. I’m supportive of social justice. I think for every person, coach or player, that will be a very personal decision. I think it has to be made at the right time and the right reason for everybody.”
Last month, when George Floyd died in police custody, protests took place across the country. At the same time, members of the NFL and other sports began expressing support in creating change on racial injustices.
Nearly every team in the NFL had players, coaches or executives release statements on the matter. Ahead of the 2020 NFL season, it appears that there will be a large group of players to kneel during the anthem.
As a result, some coaches have uttered that they’d support their players in any way they can. Besides Rhule, Bill O’Brien — the head coach of the Houston Texans — pronounced that he’d kneel with his players next season.
Rhule, who’s still earning the respect of the Panthers locker room, wants to allow his players to convene and share ideas on how to protest in 2020. While it isn’t definitive yet, Rhule is receptive to kneeling if that is what his players decide to do as a team.