The players have said they will protest and, if they do, ESPN says they will televise it.
Normally ESPN only shows the honor guard and singing of the Star-Spangled Bannerprior to games. However, for their opening Monday Night Football double-header, ESPN will also televise the “black national anthem,” a song known as Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing. In addition, the network will also “show social justice movements, actions, as they happen.”
“Our policy is to cover the anthem when it’s newsworthy. That’s not going to change,” ESPN Executive Vice President of Event and Studio Production Stephanie Druley toldreporters. “We are going to continue as we’ve done with the NBA and the WNBA. We will cover social justice movements, actions, as they happen. We’re not going to shy away from that.”
Druley stressed that ESPN does not view the social justice protests as being political.