Marshawn Lynch sits during national anthem at Oakland Raiders preseason game

Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch sits during the national anthem prior to the team's NFL preseason football game against the Arizona Cardinals Saturday Aug. 12 2017 in Glendale Ariz

In a time of controversy and racial tension in the United States, Lynch chose the ideal moment to sit during the national anthem.

Ex-Seattle running back Marshawn Lynch took a seat Saturday during the national anthem at a pre-season Oakland Raiders game, and social media went a little insane. Even though he suited up for the preseason matchup, he did not see any action on the field.

"He said, 'This is something I have done for 11 years. You do your thing and we'll do ours", Del Rio said he told Lynch. On a dark day in this country's history, when a white supremacist demonstration in Charlottesville turned deadly, the decision to not stand for the anthem is understandable, no matter what lens you view it through.

Raiders coach Jack Del Rio said he believes in standing for the anthem but isn't going to attempt to force Lynch to do so. "But I respect you as a man and you can do your thing".

Although he rarely talks to the news media, Lynch has voiced support for quarterback Colin Kaepernick's decision to kneel during the anthem last season to protest what he saw as a pattern of police mistreatment of minorities.

Lynch was not in the National Football League during Colin Kaepernick's kneeling protest against racism and police brutality last season but has previously expressed his opinion on Kaepernick's action.

Marshawn Lynch didn't play during the Oakland Raiders preseason opener Saturday, but he attracted national attention.

Lynch led the Seattle Seahawks to win Super Bowl XLVIII against the Denver Broncos in 2013, crushing the favorites 43-8.

Kaepernick remains an unsigned free agent. "So my take on it is [expletive] it got to start somewhere and if that was the starting point I just hope people open up their eyes to see that it's really a problem going on and something needs to be done for it to stop".

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