NBC to show anthem protesters during Super Bowl telecast

NBC to show anthem protesters during Super Bowl telecast
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NBC Sports will show any NFL players who elect to kneel in protest during the national anthem at the Super Bowl next month, a top executive announced.

“When you are covering a live event, you are covering what’s happening,” NBC Sports Executive Producer Fred Gaudelli said on Tuesday at a Television Critics Association conference in Pasadena, Calif.

“If there are players who choose to kneel, they will be shown live,” he added.


The Super Bowl will be played in Minneapolis on Feb. 4 and is expected to draw more than 110 million viewers.

"The Star-Spangled Banner" will be aired live and is scheduled to be performed by Pink.

Potential protesters will have an opportunity to make a statement in front of a massive audience, as 112.2 million people watched the Super Bowl in 2017 – the fifth most-watched program in television history.

Gaudelli said the broadcast team of Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth will also identify each player who kneels while giving the history behind the protests "and then get on with the game."

Ex-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began the protests during the 2016 season in protest of racial injustice and police brutality.

Protests during the anthems exploded earlier this season after President TrumpDonald TrumpMcAuliffe takes tougher stance on Democrats in Washington Democrats troll Trump over Virginia governor's race Tom Glavine, Ric Flair, Doug Flutie to join Trump for Herschel Walker event MORE objected to kneeling during the anthem, calling on players to stand "out of respect for our country and respect for our flag.”

During the final week of the regular season in December, 19 out of 1696 players kneeled or decided to stay in the locker room during the anthem in protest.

The Super Bowl is broadcast on a rotating basis between NBC, Fox and CBS.