Last month, the Jacksonville Jaguars played the Baltimore Ravens at Wembley Stadium in London. When the US national anthem played, players and coaches locked arms and some took a knee. When God Save the Queen played right after, the entire team stood to its feet. Now, the NFL team is apologizing to the military for disrespecting their honor to and sacrifice for that flag.
A letter written by Jaguars President Mark Lamping was sent to the director of military affairs and veterans in Jacksonville that stated his team was “remiss in not fully comprehending the effect of the national anthem demonstration on foreign soil has had on the men and women who have or continue to serve our country."
It’s hard to believe the gravity of such a situation never crossed a single mind in the franchise, but that’s exactly what Lamping claimed.
"This was an oversight and certainly not intended to send a message that would disparage you, our flag or our nation," the letter dated October 6th continued. "The notion never entered the minds of our players or anyone affiliated with the Jacksonville Jaguars, but today we can understand how the events in London on September 24 could have been viewed or misinterpreted. We owe you an apology and hope you will accept it."
According to the Sun Herald, “Most of the Jaguars, including owner Shad Khan, locked arms during the anthem on Sept. 24. About a dozen players took a knee during the playing of ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ at Wembley Stadium.”
Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry called the team’s actions “stupid,” and added, “The U.S. Constitution protects the right for a lot of people to do a lot of stupid things. I am a Constitutional Conservative, so I respect the wisdom of our Founders."
On Sunday, the Jaguars lost to the Los Angeles Rams, 27-17; the ninth loss out of their last 10 home games. There were 56,232 fans in attendance — the fewest number since 2009. The blame for such low attendance is being shifted from the anthem protests to the fact that the Jaguars are terrible, only winning 20 of their last 86 games.