The St. Louis players who came out onto the field with their hands up prior to the Rams vs Oakland NFL game will not be punished by the NFL.
Five Rams players raised their hands in protest as they emerged onto the field during pre-game introductions on Sunday. The protest was in response to a Missouri grand jury decision not to indict a former Ferguson cop on murder charges in the shooting death of Michael brown.
The St. Louis Police Association released a lengthy statement condemning the protest on Sunday.
"The St. Louis Police Officers Association is profoundly disappointed with the members of the St. Louis Rams football team who chose to ignore the mountains of evidence released from the St. Louis County Grand Jury this week and engage in a display that police officers around the nation found tasteless, offensive and inflammatory," read the statement.
The SLPOA called for the five players to be disciplined and for the NFL to deliver "a very public apology." But the NFL will not discipline the players and all indications are no apology is forthcoming from the league office.
“We respect and understand the concerns of all individuals who have expressed views on this tragic situation,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said in a statement to USA TODAY Sports.
“Violence should stop. There’s a lot of violence going on here in St. Louis. We definitely hear about it all, and we just want it to stop,” Wide receiver Stedman Bailey told reporters after the game.
The protest was reminiscent of the Black Power salute by track and field medalists Tommie Smith and John Carlos during the 1968 Summer Olympics. Unlike the Rams players, Smith and Carlos were ostracized and blacklisted. They and their families received death threats back home in the United States.