CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- During a press conference Monday, Panthers coach Ron Rivera shared his perspective on the national anthem protests that broke out around the NFL on Sunday.
"I do believe there's some things that need to be addressed," said Rivera. "To me I don't think this has anything to do with disrespect for the military... They're just trying to bring awareness to social injustices and inequities."
The Panthers coach went on to show his support for Julius Peppers, who remained in the locker room during Sunday's national anthem.
"I think these young men deserve a little bit more support," Rivera said.
Ron Rivera on Julius Peppers staying in locker room for National Anthem-I've got a tremendous amount of respect for how he did it. #Panthers— Nick Carboni (@NickCarboniWCNC) September 25, 2017
Panthers' owner Jerry Richardson released the following statement on Monday afternoon:
“We are proud of the men we have on this football team. Our players have been active and impactful participants in making our community stronger. From the first time I stepped into an NFL locker room at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore in 1959, I have lived and seen the sport’s ability to bring people of all backgrounds together. Politicizing the game is damaging and takes the focus off the greatness of the game itself and those who play it.”
Several other NFL owners made statements against Trump's comments.