One week after he was joined by three Miami Dolphins teammates in kneeling during the national anthem, linebacker Jelani Jenkins says he will return to standing during this week’s game.
In an interview with Time, the fourth year pro from the University of Florida spoke about his family’s legacy with being a part of the civil rights movement – including his grandfather, Esau, who will be honored as part of the new National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.
Jenkins went on to explain that the decision to kneel along with running back Arian Foster, defensive back Michael Thomas and wide receiver Kenny Stills had nothing to do with disrespect toward the military.
"I have the utmost love and respect for those who risk their lives and died serving this country," Jenkins wrote. "Several of my close family members have served in the military. I do not have an ounce of hate in my body and absolutely have no intentions to disrespect the military.”
“This is not about football, the flag, the military, or Jelani Jenkins. This is about the message: equality for all.
Jenkins said that change will “take consistent work and an undeniable effort to make things right.” The Dolphins will be in Foxboro, Massachusetts this Sunday to take on the New England Patriots.