Michael Bennett Sits on Bench During National Anthem, Plans to for Entire Season

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistAugust 14, 2017

FILE -- In this Jan. 10, 2017 file photo, Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett talks to reporters, in Renton, Wash. In a letter posted on Twitter Saturday, Feb. 11, 2017, the American professional football player pulled out of a planned trip to Israel, accusing its government of trying to use him for PR purposes. Bennett cited Muhammad Ali's support for the Palestinians, saying he too wanted to be a
Ted S. Warren/Associated Press

Seattle Seahawks defensive lineman Michael Bennett kicked off the preseason by sitting on the bench during the national anthem.

As Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times noted, he remained behind the rest of the team with a towel around his shoulders while the rest of the Seahawks locked arms.

Gregg Bell of the News Tribune captured the veteran sitting on the bench:

Gregg Bell @gbellseattle

After Michael Bennett sat alone throughout national anthem, he got up immediately, joined #Seahawks defense in huddle https://t.co/4jIz2qdhqb

Dennis Bernstein of The Fourth Period provided another view of the Pro Bowler:

After the Seahawks' 48-17 win, Bennett explained why he sat for the national anthem, via Bell, and confirmed he will be sitting for every anthem in 2017, per Condotta:

Bennett has been an outspoken supporter of former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who took a knee during the national anthem throughout last season.

He also explained on Power 105.1 earlier this offseason why he believed Kaepernick was being blackballed from the league, via John Breech of CBS Sports:

"I think it's one of the things that nobody really wants to talk about. For him to bring up race and politics in sports, I think it struck a lot of people in the wrong way. You watch the people that really watch football, it's middle America and the people that buy tickets to the game aren't really African-American people, and for him to bring that into that crowd was one thing that people felt like shouldn't of been there."

Michael, along with his brother Martellus, never seems to shy away from voicing his opinion and is now continuing that trend with his actions before Sunday's preseason game against the Los Angeles Chargers.

Meanwhile, former Seahawks and current Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch was also seen seated during the national anthem prior to his game Saturday, although he maintains this is something he has done throughout his 11-year career.


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