Gambling fans will prepare for Week 1 of the NFL season with several potential wagers, including some revolving around New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees. There are now multiple props focused on his actions during the first national anthem of the regular season. Bettors can win or lose money based on whether or not he kneels.
The former Super Bowl champion issued multiple apologies on his Instagram account after making comments about peaceful protests during the national anthem. He said that he "missed the mark" when saying that kneeling disrespected the flag and promised to be better. With these comments surfacing, sportsbooks created props focused on Brees. According to Legal Sports Betting, the Saints QB faces -900 odds to stand and +500 to kneel with his teammates.
In addition to props based on kneeling, bettors can win or lose money based on how Brees positions his hands. He always places his hand over his heart during the national anthem, but that could change. Brees faces -140 odds to put his hand on a teammate's shoulder as a sign of solidarity during a peaceful protest.
"I will never agree with anybody disrespecting the flag of the United States of America or our country," Brees previously said during an interview with Yahoo! Finance. "Let me just tell what I see or what I feel when the national anthem is played and when I look at the flag of the United States. I envision my two grandfathers, who fought for this country during World War II, one in the Army and one in the Marine Corp. Both risking their lives to protect our country and to try to make our country and this world a better place. So every time I stand with my hand over my heart looking at that flag and singing the national anthem, that's what I think about."
These comments sparked numerous critical responses, as well as expletive-filled chants during protests in New Orleans. Brees later apologized and promised to be an ally for those fighting to eliminate systemic racism. He also sent a message to President Donald Trump, saying that they can't use the flag to "turn people away" or distract them from the real issues. Brees said that it is time to stop talking about the flag and instead address police brutality, racial injustice and several other issues in the black community.
"We as a white community need to listen and learn from the pain and suffering of our black communities," Brees said at the end of a lengthy Instagram post. "We must acknowledge the problems, identify the solutions, and then put this into action. The black community cannot do it alone. This will require all of us."