As another NFL Sunday begins, the anthem protest debate continues in Baltimore

Gail Heiss and Micheal Goldberg hold up signs urging players to stand up before the Ravens and Steelers played in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

BALTIMORE — The national debate about anthem protests, patriotism and unity revolving around the NFL and its players was back on vivid display here Sunday at MT Bank Stadium.

Baltimore Ravens players took a knee before the national anthem, to a mixture of boos and cheers from those in the crowd, then stood for the playing of the anthem before their game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

An announcement to the crowd asked fans to join the Ravens players and organization in prayer to embrace “kindness, unity, equality and justice for all Americans.”

Steelers players stood on their sideline for the anthem, one week after declining to be on the field for the anthem before their game in Chicago. That thrust the Steelers into the controversy, amplified by President Trump, about NFL players’ national anthem protests, even as the Steelers called their action nonpolitical. Steelers offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva, a former Army Ranger, broke ranks with his teammates and stood at the front of a tunnel leading to the

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