Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports

Bill Belichick releases statement following several Patriots kneeling during national anthem Sunday

Ryan Hannable
September 25, 2017 - 4:11 pm

After 16 Patriots players knelt during the national anthem prior to Sunday's Patriots-Texans game, Bill Belichick was asked for his thoughts after the game.

"I’m just going to talk about the game," he said. "I’ll deal with that later."

Belichick kept his conference call Monday morning to strictly football questions, but Monday afternoon he addressed the protests with a statement.

It reads: “I have immense respect and admiration for our players, for how they conduct themselves professionally as New England Patriots and for how they represent themselves, their families and community as men.  I have coached football for over four decades and one of the greatest things about being in this environment is the diversity of people, backgrounds, viewpoints and relationships we are fortunate to experience. 

"As with any large group of people, there is a variety of perspectives and opinions on many topics.  Discussions occur between myself, individual players, groups and the entire team on an ongoing basis.  They concern the team and other issues surrounding the team.  I am going to keep the specifics of those conversations private.  I will do what I feel is best for the team in my role as head coach and collectively, we will work together to find the best way to proceed.”