The New Orleans Saints played the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday night, and in a show of major solidarity, members of both teams knelt on the field — in prayer.
What are the details?
New Orleans Saints tight end Benjamin Watson shared a particularly moving photo of the gathering to his Instagram page on Sunday, captioning it, “Praise God from whom ALL blessings flow. #MeetUsAtThe50.”
In the photos, various Saints and Buccaneers players kneeled on the 50-yard line, holding hands, linking arms, or wrapping their arms around one another’s’ shoulders.
You can see the photo below.
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Watson has pretty much always been outspoken about his Christian faith.
In 2017, Watson released a book titled, “The New Dad’s Playbook: Gearing Up for the Biggest Game of Your Life,” a Christian-centric guide of sorts to being a father.
In the early days of the 2016 kickoff to the kneeling protest craze — ushered in by former NFL player and activist Colin Kaepernick — Watson wrote an impassioned Facebook post detailing why he would not be kneeling with some of his fellow players in protest.
Watson said that he vowed to always stand during the playing of the national anthem because he believes in America and because he supports the U.S. armed forces.
In a lengthy post, he wrote, “I stand … because I grew up in NAVY town USA and traveled overseas to support members of our armed forces who follow orders regardless of their personal sentiments.”
“I stand for those who were forced to give their lives building the country that confined them to the tobacco fields and indigo plantations,” Watson continued. “I stand because as a child, I saw my father stand. A man who lived the tumultuous transition from ‘separate but equal’ to the times surrounding the Civil Rights Act when angry people who held signs at his new school viscously screamed ‘N***** GO HOME!’ I stand because on the contrary, no one held such a sign when I walked into my grade school.”
Watson went on to give thanks to God for America, and for Watson’s ability to live in a country such as the U.S.
“I stand, because this mixed bag of evil and good is MY home,” he added. “And because it’s MY home my standing is a pledge to continue the fight against all injustice and preserve the greatest attributes of the country, including Colin Kaepernick’s right to kneel.”
You can read Watson’s full 2016 post below.