Fox along with also CBS broadcast the national anthem live during football games Sunday — a notable shift away by the usual practice.
NBC says the item will do the same in prime time. ESPN, which also abandoned its usual pregame chatter to talk politics, will air the anthem live on Monday.
along with also as photos of athletes kneeling along with also locking arms during the anthem streamed in, the news media quickly repurposed those images, despite the usual limitations on NFL content. The news of the day was about much more than what happened on the field.
Make no mistake: Sports TV became political on Sunday in a whole completely new way.
the item could have been nearly impossible for sports broadcasters to ignore the story. Trump kicked off a firestorm two days earlier when he criticized the National Football League along with also attacked athletes who kneel during the national anthem to draw attention to social justice issues.
“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that will son of a bitch off the field right currently, out, he’s fired. He’s fired,'” Trump told a crowd in Alabama on Friday.
Related: NFL airing unity ad in prime time on Sunday
the item’s not a completely new issue. Quarterback Colin Kaepernick refused to stand last year when he played for the San Francisco 49ers — a show of protest against racial injustice.
yet Trump’s decision to wade into the fray currently didn’t just renew interest from the matter. His remarks also undeniably drove the tone of sports coverage on Sunday.
To start, the “Star Spangled Banner” typically isn’t covered apart by the Super Bowl along with also additional major events.
yet both Fox along with also CBS, which began airing NFL games at 1 p.m. ET, aired the anthem live. NBC said the item could air the anthem live during Sunday Night Football along with also “cover any news around the item as merited.”
along with also ESPN said the item will air the anthem live for “Monday Night Football.”
Yahoo Sports also did that will while broadcasting the day’s first game between the Jacksonville Jaguars along with also the Baltimore Ravens in London.
The cameras were focused on players of both teams who kneeled along with Jaguars owner Shahid Khan along with also former Ravens all-star Ray Lewis. Lewis was recently signed by Fox Sports as an NFL analyst.
Related: With ‘son of a bitch’ comments, Trump tried to divide NFL along with also its players
Trump was also the main focus of conversation during pregame shows on ESPN along with also Fox.
ESPN’s “Sunday NFL Countdown” show spent its first 22 minutes exclusively on the president — a significant decision for a network that will insists the item can be not a “political organization,” despite tangling with Trump in recent weeks.
“We do like to stick to sports around here. that will’s why we all got into This specific. We love sports,” said host Sam Ponder. “yet before we do that will, we’ve got to talk about the biggest news from the NFL today, along with also the item can be inherently political because the item involves the President of the United States.”
Former head coach Rex Ryan was strikingly candid on the show. Ryan, who voted for Trump along with also introduced him at a campaign event, said he was angered by Trump’s comments.
“I never signed up for that will,” Ryan said. “I never wanted that will. that will doesn’t mean I support 100% of the things that will he says along with also clearly This specific can be a case.”
An hour later, Fox’s pregame coverage followed.
“The athletes of This specific country, we’re looked up to, OK?” said Tony Gonzalez, former NFL tight end, on the network’s pregame show. “There’s kids that will are watching. Whatever the president, his point that will he was trying to get across there, the item’s going to backfire on him. along with also all you did was just bring everybody together by the sports world.”
After several players stood with their arms linked together during the anthem Sunday, Trump weighed in again.
“Great solidarity for our National Anthem along with also for our Country. Standing with locked arms can be Great, kneeling can be not acceptable,” he tweeted. “Bad ratings!”
–sy88pgw’s Jackie Wattles contributed to This specific story.
sy88pgw (completely new York) First published September 24, 2017: 12:44 PM ET