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Broncos players select names, messages to honor and spotlight on helmets as part of social justice initiatives

The Broncos added decals to their helmets ahead of the start of the regular season to honor victims of racism and police brutality and support social justice initiatives.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — As the 2020 season begins, dozens of Broncos players will take the field on Monday night with decals on their helmets to honor victims of police brutality and racism and to spread messages to combat racism.

"I think it's huge," Jurrell Casey said on Sept. 3. "We support all kinds of causes in the NFL. We do the Salute [to Service] week. We do the breast cancer week. We do a raise awareness week. It's something that we already do in the NFL which is great. They allow us to voice our opinions, voice our feelings out there. This extra step now this year with us being able to wear decals, it's just another step in the right direction to make sure we influence change inside this world."

Many players opted to honor victims of police brutality, including George Floyd, Elijah McClain and Breonna Taylor.

Floyd was killed when a Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck for nearly nine minutes during an arrest in May. His death, as well as Taylor's, sparked protests around the United States and in many other countries. Broncos players participated in a march in June in downtown Denver to lend their voices and show their support for the fight against police brutality and the cause for racial justice.

A dozen players chose to spotlight the case of McClain, whose death at the hands of Aurora police officers in 2019 has gained national attention in recent months. McClain was not suspected of a crime when police detained him, and after an altercation, police placed him in a chokehold that caused him to lose consciousness. When paramedics arrived, they injected him with ketamine. He went into cardiac arrest en route to the hospital and died less than a week after the initial altercation. Federal, state and city investigations have been opened into the incident and the police department's practices.

Nine players, including safeties Justin Simmons and Kareem Jackson, picked to honor Breonna Taylor. In March, Taylor was killed by Louisville, Kentucky, police during the execution of a search warrant for her apartment, though she was not the target of the investigation. One of the officers has been fired, but none have been arrested or charged.

Kansas City native De'Vante Bausby selected a high-school classmate, Cameron Lamb, who was shot and killed by a Kansas City police officer in 2019. A grand jury indicted the officer in June on charges of involuntary manslaughter and armed criminal action.

Defensive back Kevin Toliver II, who grew up in Jacksonville, Florida, also chose to remember a victim from his hometown. In 2012, 17-year-old Jordan Davis was murdered in a parking lot by a white man after an argument over loud music. The man who shot and killed Davis was convicted on first-degree murder charges in 2014.

Selections for participating players on the active roster and practice squad are listed below.

Note: List accurate as of Sept. 8; players are able to change their selection. Names that were still under consideration as of this date are not included here.

Table inside Article
McTelvin AgimElijah McClain
Calvin AndersonBreonna Taylor
Jeremiah AttaochuEnd Racism
Essang BasseyBreonna Taylor
Andrew BeckIt Takes All of Us
Jacob BobenmoyerIt Takes All of Us
Garett BollesElijah McClain
A.J. BouyeEnd Racism
Bryce CallahanStop Hate
Jurrell CaseyBlack Lives Matter
Bradley ChubbElijah McClain
Tyrie ClevelandBlack Lives Matter
Lloyd Cushenberry IIIBlack Lives Matter
Duke Dawson Jr.It Takes All of Us
Jeff DriskelStop Hate
Noah FantBlack Lives Matter
Austin FortStop Hate
Royce FreemanBreonna Taylor
Graham GlasgowIt Takes All of Us
Melvin Gordon IIIBlack Lives Matter
DaeSean HamiltonElijah McClain
KJ HamlerBreonna Taylor
Jonathan HarrisBlack Lives Matter
Shelby HarrisElijah McClain
Kareem JacksonBreonna Taylor
Jerry JeudyStop Hate
Josey JewellIt Takes All of Us
Dre'Mont JonesIt Takes All of Us
Phillip LindsayElijah McClain
Drew LockStop Hate
Trey MarshallBlack Lives Matter
Sam MartinIt Takes All of Us
Brandon McManusIt Takes All of Us
Von MillerBreonna Taylor
Michael OjemudiaElijah McClain
Albert OkwuegbunamElijah McClain
Tim PatrickElijah McClain
Mike PurcellEnd Racism
Malik ReedBreonna Taylor
Dalton RisnerIt Takes All of Us
Austin SchlottmannStop Hate
Justin SimmonsBreonna Taylor
Diontae SpencerBlack Lives Matter
Justin StrnadIt Takes All of Us
Courtland SuttonElijah McClain
Nick VannettGeorge Floyd
DeMarcus WalkerBlack Lives Matter
Elijah WilkinsonElijah McClain
De'Vante BausbyCameron Lamb
Trinity BensonBlack Lives Matter
Fred BrownBlack Lives Matter
Jeremy CoxBlack Lives Matter
Alijah HolderElijah McClain
P.J. LockeStop Hate
Patrick MorrisGeorge Floyd
Jake RodgersStop Hate
Brett RypienIt Takes All of Us
Kevin Toliver IIJordan Davis
Derrek TuszkaIt Takes All of Us
Josh WatsonBreonna Taylor

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