By UPI |

NFL to play black national anthem before Week 1 games

Lift Ev'ry Voice And Sing, traditionally known as the black national anthem, will be played before The Star-Spangled Banner in Week 1 NFL games. File Photo by Tasos Katopodis/UPI

July 2 (UPI) -- The NFL plans to play "Lift Ev'ry Voice And Sing," traditionally known as the black national anthem, before every Week 1 game this season.

League sources told ESPN and NFL Media on Thursday that the song will be played or performed before "The Star-Spangled Banner." The league's regular-season opener is scheduled for Sept. 10, with the Houston Texans visiting the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.


In addition, the NFL is discussing with players the possibility of wearing helmet decals or jersey patches in honor of those impacted by systemic racism and police brutality, according to NFL Media.

The league also may produce educational programs about victims -- among other ideas -- in its ongoing efforts to address social injustices.

Last month, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell admitted the league was "wrong" for not listening to its players earlier about racial injustice. In the video, he condemned racism and said he would reach out to players who have previously raised their voices about racial inequality.

Also in June, the NFL announced it plans to increase its social justice footprint by pledging $250 million over a 10-year period.

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