Getty Images Mike Evans

Mike Evans sat for the national anthem Sunday. That is nothing new. NFL players have been sitting or kneeling for the Star-Spangled Banner since Colin Kaepernick began doing so in the preseason.

But Kaepernick said his protest was a means of challenging general injustices against African-Americans. Evans has a different, more specific reason.

He's protesting the president-elect, Donald Trump.

"I'm not big on politics or anything like that, but I told myself, 'If this happens, America is not right right now,'" Evans said after the Buccaneers' 36-10 win over the Bears Sunday. "I said this a long time ago -- when he ran, I thought it was a joke. The joke continues."


According to ESPN's Jenna Laine, Evans will refuse to stand for the national anthem "as long as Trump is the president-elect."

Evans was asked if his protest relates to Kaepernick's message of promoting racial equality and he cleared things up.

"I know Kaepernick did that," Evans said. "I'm doing it for a different reason, for how a reality star can be the president. That's not a good look. ... I'm not a political person, but I have common sense and I know something is not right."

Evans had four receptions for 66 yards in the victory. He leads the Bucs in nearly every receiving category including receptions (59), receiving yards (811) and receiving touchdowns (eight). But he heard boos from his home crowd before the game. This past Sunday happened to be the Bucs' annual "Salute to Service" game, honoring members of the armed forces.

"I don't want to disrespect the veterans or anything," Evans said. "The men and women that served this country -- I'm forever indebted to them. But the things that have been going on in America lately, I'm not going to stand for that.

"When Ashton Kutcher comes out and says, 'We've been Punk'd,' I'll stand again, but I won't stand anymore."

Evans was born and raised in Galveston, Texas, and he attended Texas A&M University for three years before getting drafted by the Bucs in 2014. He claims his recent comments do not have to do with party affiliation.

"It's not about the Republican Party or the Democratic Party or anything like that," he said. "It's just who he is. It's well-documented what he's done. I'm not going to stand for something I don't believe in. That's the end of that."

The Bucs released a statement Sunday evening, regarding Evans' protest, saying, "We encourage all members of our organization to respectfully honor our flag during the playing of the national anthem."


Evans' next opportunity to protest comes on the road at Kansas City. The 4-5 Bucs travel to the 7-2 Chiefs next Sunday for a 1 p.m. kickoff.

-- Follow Jeff Eisenband on Twitter @JeffEisenband. Like Jeff Eisenband on Facebook.

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