Kenny Stills, Julius Thomas, More Kneel for Anthem Despite Dolphins Team Policy

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistNovember 5, 2017

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - NOVEMBER 06:  Michael Thomas #31 of the Miami Dolphins and  Kenny Stills #10 of the Miami Dolphins take a knee during the national anthem prior to the game against the New York Jets at the Hard Rock Stadium on November 6, 2016 in Miami Gardens, Florida.  (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Chris Trotman/Getty Images

Miami Dolphins safety Michael Thomas, wide receiver Kenny Stills and tight end Julius Thomas kneeled during the national anthem before Sunday's game against the Oakland Raiders, the Palm Beach Post's Joe Schad reported.

In October, Dolphins head coach Adam Gase created a rule mandating Dolphins players either stand for the anthem or remain in the tunnel prior to games. According to Schad, Gase gave the players permission to engage in the protest.

The trio had previously kneeled before Miami's Week 4 defeat to the New Orleans Saints, which was in London.

After Gase instituted his anthem rule, the three players stayed in the tunnel prior the Dolphins' Week 6 win over the Atlanta Falcons. Stills initially played down the significance of kneeling during the anthem with regard to the protest movement's broader aims, per ESPN.com's James Walker:

"It's not about what I think about or anything like that. It's about the work that we are doing and it's never been about the protest or the flag or any of that. So I just continue to focus on the work that we are doing in the community and we've got some plans and things in the work with the NFL and so that's what we're working on."

A group of NFL players met with the league and team owners in October to discuss the protests during the anthem. The two sides left having made little progress.

According to the Washington Post's Mark Maske, the players invited the NFL and owners to another meeting with a mediator helping to work with the respective parties.

"We'll see what happens," Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Torrey Smith said. "But there's still conversations going on through our leadership. But they're positive. It's all positive."