Olivier Vernon of the New York Giants doesn't seem terribly concerned by whether or not football fans approve of national anthem protests.
In an interview published Thursday with the New York Post, Vernon — the only Giants player still kneeling during the playing of "The Star-Spangled Banner" — says he hears an awful lot of comments from fans in the stands. But he doesn't really care.
In fact, he has advice for fans who are really upset about his protests: stay home.
What exactly did he say?
Vernon told the Post that, whether he kneels during away games or home games, he receives flak from those in the stands.
"You hear 'coward' and 'stand up' and 'disgrace,'" Vernon said of those shouting from the stands. "It’s fine. As long as nobody comes on the field and touches me. You stay where you at, you’re going to be all right. They have a right. Oh yeah, I hear it all the time."
"If they don’t like it, don’t come to the game," he added.
Vernon noted that he will continue to kneel for the betterment of black communities within the United States.
"At the end of the day, you want to fight for something that’s right," Vernon explained.
He subsequently pointed to the league's offer to contribute nearly $100 million to "causes considered important to African-American communities" in exchange for NFL players to end kneeling protests.
"At least some type of change that can help elevate something, you just see something that’s being pushed," Vernon added. "I feel like it’s a small step, but it is progress."
The defensive end concluded, "I’m fine where I’m at right now. Ain’t nothing wrong with feeling bad for what you believe in. What’s right is right and what’s wrong is wrong. I stand behind my beliefs."