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Jack Del Rio had the perfect response to Marshawn Lynch sitting during the national anthem

For The Win logo For The Win 3 days ago Steven Ruiz
Jack Del Rio had the perfect response to Marshawn Lynch sitting during the national anthem © Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports Jack Del Rio had the perfect response to Marshawn Lynch sitting during the national anthem

Marshawn Lynch set off a bit of a social media storm Saturday night when he sat on a cooler during the singing of the national anthem before the Raiders game in Arizona.

After the game, Oakland coach Jack Del Rio was asked about Lynch's decision to do so.

Via USA TODAY Sports:

"He said, 'This is something I've done for 11 years - it's not a form of anything other than me being myself,' " Del Rio said in a postgame news conference. "I said, 'So you understand how I feel, I very strongly believe in standing for the national anthem, but I'm gonna respect you as a man. You do your thing, OK, and we'll do ours.' "

This is really the only way a coach should respond to one of his players "protesting" the anthem. It's not something Del Rio agrees with, but he's going to respect his player's decision. That's all a player can ask from his coach.

What Del Rio clearly understands - and the thing those who condemn such acts fail to - is that people have different experiences in this country. The flag may represent one thing for Del Rio (patriotism, freedom, the military, etc.) and another for Lynch (systematic racism, police brutality, oppression, etc.). On a dark day in this country's history, when a white supremacist demonstration in Charlottesville turned deadly, the decision to not stand for the anthem is understandable, no matter what lens you view it through.

Lynch has spoken out in support of Colin Kaepernick, who began his protest of the national anthem at the same time last year. During an appearance on Conan, the Raiders running back had this to say about the quarterback:

"Well I mean with what's going on, I'd rather see him take a knee than stand up, put his hands up and get murdered," Lynch said. "So my take on it is [expletive] it got to start somewhere and if that was the starting point I just hope people open up their eyes to see that it's really a problem going on and something needs to be done for it to stop. And I mean if you're really not racist, then you won't see what he's doing as a threat to America but just addressing a problem that we have."

The Raiders fell to the Cardinals 20-10 in their preseason opener. Lynch did not play.

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