Former Green Beret Nate Boyer reveals thoughts on Drew Brees, kneeling during National Anthem

Rob Bradford
June 06, 2020 - 8:52 am
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Nate Boyer's perspective regarding the recent controversies is a valuable one.

A former Green Beret who spent six years in the service, Boyer ultimately served as a long-snapper for the University of Texas despite not previously playing organized football. He would get a chance to participate in one preseason game with the Seahawks as a rookie free agent.

Boyer's claim to fame also emanates from being the person who advised Colin Kaepernick that kneeling on the sideline during the National Anthem to protest police brutality was better than sitting while the tribute is being played. It is a subject that has been resurfaced with the tragic death of George Floyd along with Drew Brees' recent comments regarding the quarterback's view of those who take a knee during the Anthem.

So when Boyer appeared on OMF Friday to talk about the recent controversies, it was notable, particularly when answering two questions: 1. His thoughts on Brees' comments; and 2. Would he kneel during the National Anthem?

On Brees comments on Yahoo! Finance striking the wrong tone: He knows that and that’s why he has apologized twice and why people for the most part are upset about it. It’s not the feelings that he had. I had the same feelings he had. I have the same amount of pride in my country. When the Anthem plays I stand up, hold my hand to my heart. The one NFL game I played in I stood on the sideline and cried when that song played. I get all that. I feel the same thing. In this situation when we’re talking about the narrative as to why these protests are happening, why people are taking a knee? It’s not about the military. It’s not about being anti-American. It’s not about being against the flag or the Anthem. What he said wasn’t about police brutality, racial inequality, social injustice, the things that they have been pretty verbal about since the beginning. That’s where it’s frustrating, and people are pretty disappointed. But Drew is a really good guy. He has done a lot of great things for the city of New Orleans, for the veterans' community. He helped secure voting rights for formerly incarcerated people in Louisiana. It was one of the last two states that didn’t allow that and he was the leader.

"It’s not a pass. He definitely doesn’t get a pass. But I hope and believe that he will come out of this stronger and more understanding and listen better and it will help galvanize the team, galvanize the city even more and we’ll grow from it. That’s my hope anyway."

On if Boyer would kneel during the National Anthem: "No sir. I don’t feel that way. I respect that right. I will stand next to those men who choose to do that and I will fight and take action to see that that change occurs because that’s way more important than the gesture is the action afterward. That’s how it really gets fixed. I’m all on board for that. But when I hear that song, those symbols mean something different to me. I’ve had a lot of people I know … I carried a casket draped in an American flag with my best friend in a military funeral. It’s just different to me."