COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) - Broncos linebacker Von Miller may be out an endorsement deal as a result of kneeling during the national anthem.
Before the team's game with the Buffalo Bills Sunday, Miller was one of 32 members of the Broncos who took a knee to protest what they see as racial injustice in the country.
President Trump on Friday, and again several times through the weekend, said athletes should be fired for taking a knee during the national anthem, tweeting that "if a players wants the privilege of making millions of dollars in the NFL, or other leagues, he or she should not be allowed to disrespect our Great American Flag (or Country) and should stand for the National Anthem. If not, YOU'RE FIRED."
In response, players across the NFL protested Sunday by taking a knee, locking arms, or placing a hand on a teammate's shoulder in a show of support. Some did not even come out of the locker room for the anthem.
As a result of his actions before the game, Phil Long dealership asked CBS4 and other television stations to stop airing their ads featuring Von Miller. The general manager of Phil Long Ford in Denver told CBS4's Rick Sallinger that Miller has not been fired, but instead they are changing some advertising.
A full statement from Phil Long Dealerships is below.
Last season, for his protests, Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall lost sponsorship deals. Marshall knelt again Sunday before the game.
Marshall was later honored by Harvard for his stance on social injustice.
Phil Long Dealerships Statement:
We are evaluating the events of the weekend. It is important to state that we haven't fired Von. We are in the middle of contract renewal and this weekend's events remind us that sometimes we feel that we best represent ourselves. We support Von and his first amendment rights, we know Von and he's a good person. He donated a police car to his hometown police dept. All that notwithstanding when we bring in celebrities to represent us we run the risk of being misrepresented.
We, like millions of Americans are concerned and will respond consistently with our values as a proud American company founded by a war hero (Phil Long). While we can't control the actions of others we can be responsible for how we support our nation and community. That is why, years ago, our principal owner, Jay Cimino, founded the Mount Carmel Veteran's Service center, and is supported by all Phil Long Dealerships. We support this cause not just with our words, but financially as well, and it is serving hundreds of veterans in need right here in Colorado. This would be a great time for our community to show support for our military community by supporting this cause or others that continue to serve them after they serve us. https://veteranscenter.org/
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