Buccaneers wide receiver, Mike Evans, is the latest athlete to sit during the national anthem, as he did so last Sunday, when his team played the Chicago Bears at home. The sitting of the national anthem has been a trend this year that quarterback, Colin Kaepernick, started at the beginning of the season. However, Mike Evans’ reason for sitting was different than Colin’s. Mike Evans said he sat during Sunday’s national anthem to protest new presidential elect Donald Trump. This was a major shock to fans everywhere, as Veterans Day had just passed, and the NFL was celebrating a day where the teams honored past veterans worldwide.
Bucs fans are furious about the incident and have lost respect for this young star throughout the process. Lots of fans are saying this young player really showed his true colors last Sunday and more say that as a result of this incident, they will not be attending any more Bucs home games the rest of the season. Mike Evans said that he thought Trump being elected President was an absolute joke and that is the reason why he did not stand last Sunday, for the national anthem. Even players on his team have expressed that they are disappointed with Evans decision to sit during the national anthem.
Then there was the Bucs’ Head Coach, Dirk Koetter, who expressed he was disappointed as well with his decision to sit last Sunday. "Yeah, I'm disappointed for that," Koetter said. "I also respect Mike's freedom of speech and freedom of expression," he told the press on Monday morning at the Bucs facility in Tampa, "Believe it or not, we have practiced how to line up for the national anthem. We've worked on it. I don't know if our organization has the right to tell a guy that he needs to do that," Koetter said in his statement. "I would be disappointed if any of our players didn't stand up for the national anthem, personally. I look at that as a salute to the people who have paved the way for us, but at the same time, this is a free country, and I think freedom of speech is something that we all believe in and freedom of expression. That's an individual's choice. That's a fine line there. I would personally be disappointed, but I think it would be hard to enforce that rule."
Head Coach, Koetter, said he had no idea that Evans was planning to sit down before the game started, and it still took him a while to notice it after the fact. Evans says that Koetter sitting during the national anthem has nothing to do with the military at all or Colin Kaepernick's cause. He said the only reason he sat down was to protest Donald Trump, and since has said he is sorry if he offended any military personal at all, as that was not his intent. It was terrible timing for this young player to make this stand as it was Veterans Day weekend and people across the country were paying their respects. One thing is for sure, that Evans has now lost many fans due to this incident and many Bucs fans are very upset with him.