NFL player and new Oakland Raider Marshawn Lynch sparked controversy on Sunday after sitting down for the national anthem.
Lynch is one of the best at his position in the NFL. The running back who made a name for himself on the Seattle Seahawks is a force to reckoned with on the football field.
But former Raider and Heisman trophy winner Tim Brown is not pleased with Lynch taking up former pro football player Colin Kaepernick's cause. During an interview with TMZ Sports, Brown called Lynch to the carpet.
“You know why man, why, why bring this to yourself. He has the perfect thing going on in Oakland. Why bring negativity to this incredibly positive situation?”
Brown followed up, “I just don't get it. I understand these guys man, they try to make statements. They're trying to be a part of this world but football is where people go to get away from all of that stuff.”
When asked if the protest was a distraction to the team, Brown hit back with, “Well, I mean you know I'm sure everyone is going to say that it's not. But I'm sure everybody will tell they will have to sit and talk about it and answer to it, also. Either he's going to choose to represent himself and do this deal, or he's going to say you know, 'Hey I'm here to help the Raiders win a football game, win a championship if I can.'”
The former Raider added, “Outside of the stadium, he can do whatever you want to do. And I know the Raiders' organization well enough to know that they would help in any way they possibly could — outside of the stadium.”
Brown said that he hopes to see Lynch stand at his next game. “I hope this is a preseason thing. He's not suiting up, he's not whatever. I just hope he's just ignoring from that standpoint. I just would hate to see this season be marred with people protesting him and that kind of stuff.”
Lynch's protest is already influencing his former teammates in Seattle, too. Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett sat out of the national anthem on Monday night.
Bennett told ESPN, “With everything that's been going on the last couple of months, and especially after the last couple of days seeing what's going on in Virginia, and earlier today in Seattle. I just wanted to be able to use my platform to be able to continuously speak on injustice.”