Tavarres Changes Mind, To Stand For Anthem

Eagles linebacker Myke Tavarres will now stand up on Thursday against the Jets.

Myke Tavarres. (Jeff Fusco)

Myke Tavarres. (Jeff Fusco)

UPDATE: Tavarres will now stand for the national anthem, according to his agent Corey Williams.

Doug Pederson also released the following statement:

“We respect the national anthem, its history and our many freedoms as Americans that it celebrates. We also respect an individual’s freedom of expression.”

Original Story

Myke Tavarres plans to sit down during the national anthem before the Eagles’ preseason finale on Thursday against the Jets, according to ESPN’s Tim McManusColin Kaepernick created a stir by doing the same thing to protest the social injustices he sees in the United States.

Tavarres, who stood up on Saturday in Indianapolis during the pregame ceremony, said he almost sat down.

“We’ve got an issue in this country in this day and age, and I feel like somebody needs to step up and we all need to step up,” Tavarres told ESPN. “We’ve got that right. There’s just a lot going on that people don’t want to talk about, and I feel like us as athletes, we’re looked at as role models. And I feel like with Colin Kaepernick, he’s doing a great job for standing up in what he believes in, and most people may not like that, but that’s his opinion, he’s entitled to it, and I respect him for doing it.”

The Eagles reportedly gave Tavarres the second-most guaranteed money among all undrafted free agents in April, but he hasn’t stood out during the preseason. Some initially thought he could sneak his way onto the 53-man roster because of his special teams ability and the Eagles’ lack of linebacker depth, but it now seems he’s unlikely to do so.

Tavarres appeared to have a solid shot at making the practice squad, but this decision could change how the Eagles view giving him a spot.

“In this situation, I’ve really got nothing to lose,” he told ESPN. “I’m a rookie free agent, haven’t signed any major contract, so there’s not a lot of money on the line, I don’t have any big endorsement deals on the line. Really what’s at stake is my pride and what kind of man would I be and what kind of African-American would I be if I didn’t stand my ground on this issue we have today?

“[It] needs to be done. Will there be backlash? Probably. I don’t think anyone has bought my jersey yet, so I don’t know if it’s going to be burned, but it’s a major issue and I’m definitely going to stand my ground for this one.”