The Jacksonville Jaguars have apologized to local military leaders for kneeling during the playing of the national anthem before their game at Wembley Stadium in London on September 24.
On October 6, Jaguars president Mark Lamping wrote to Bill Spann, director of Jacksonville's Military Affairs and Veterans Department, "This was an oversight and certainly not intended to send a message that would disparage you, our flag or our nation,” admitting the Jaguars were "remiss in not fully comprehending the effect of the national anthem demonstration on foreign soil has had on the men and women who have or continue to serve our country." The letter was forwarded to Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry on Monday.
The Jaguars made their kneeling even more egregious in London by standing for the playing of God Save The Queen.
Lamping's letter, written on behalf of Khan and Tom Coughlin, the team's executive vice president of football operations, added, "The notion never entered the minds of our players or anyone affiliated with the Jacksonville Jaguars, but today we can understand how the events in London on September 24 could have been viewed or misinterpreted. We owe you an apology and hope you will accept it."
The day after the London game, Curry had blasted the Jaguars, stating, "I stand and cover my heart for the pledge and the anthem. I think it's stupid to do otherwise. The U.S. Constitution protects the right for a lot of people to do a lot of stupid things. I am a Constitutional Conservative, so I respect the wisdom of our Founders."
The fallout from the Jaguars kneeling has been felt at the box office; the team acknowledged that for their game this past Sunday, the team sold the fewest number of tickets distributed for a Jaguars home game since 2009.