Mike Tomlin explains why Steelers will stay in locker room during national anthem
The Steelers say they won't be affected by 'divisive times'
If Sunday's early game in London between the Jaguars and Ravens is any indication, the rest of this week's action -- all because President Trump : "Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a bitch off the field right now," the president said to a cheering crowd. "Out. He's fired. He's fired!"
In the hours since Trump's words, players, teams, team owners, the NFLPA, the league and former coaches and players-turned TV analysts have all criticized the president for his divisive remarks. But one team that won't take part in any pregame protests are the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin told CBS Sports sideline reporter Jamie Erdahl that the team will not participate in the national anthem prior to Sunday's game against the Bears in Chicago. The Steelers will remain in the locker room. That said, Tomlin did speak with Erdahl:
"You know, these are very divisive times for our country and for us as a football team it's about us remaining solid. We're not going to be divided by anything said by anyone. ... "[I told our players] if you feel the need to do anything I'm going to be supportive of that -- as Americans you have that right. But whatever we do we're going to do 100 percent, we're going to do together. We're not going to let divisive times or divisive individuals affect our agenda."
On Saturday, Steelers president Art Rooney II issued this statement: "I believe the commissioner made an appropriate statement and I have nothing to add at this time."
And here are Roger Goodell's remarks from earlier Saturday: "The NFL and our players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and our culture. There is no better example than the amazing response from our clubs and players to the terrible natural disasters we've experienced over the last month. Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game and all of our players, and a failure to understand the overwhelming force for good our clubs and players represent in our communities."
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