Sean McDermott responds to Jim Kelly’s criticism of LeSean McCoy

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BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Sean McDermott locked arms and stood with players in a show of solidarity during the singing of the national anthem ahead of the Bills 26-16 win over the Broncos on Sunday.

Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly was also on the field pre-game, and held a hand up over his head with his hat as other members of the team took a knee, protesting President Donald Trump’s comments on player protests.

On Monday, Kelly was critical of LeSean McCoy saying he “lost a lot of respect” for McCoy for how he handled himself – kneeling and the stretching on the field during the singing of the Star Spangled Banner.

Addressing the media on Monday, McDermott was left to answer questions regarding Kelly’s rebuke of McCoy and whether the hall of famer would be welcome back on the Bills sideline.

“We put out a team statement for a reason and I stand by that statement,” McDermott said.  “Jim Kelly is one of the hallmarks of this organization,” McDermott said. “He is an alum of this organization, this football team. I don’t at this point see that changing.”

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RELATED: Jerry Hughes and LeSean McCoy respond to criticism from President Trump

McDermott was also asked if he thought players would continue to protest as the president continued to tweet his displeasure of their actions into Monday.

“Again, we are focused on the Atlanta Falcons,” the head coach said multiple times.

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“What is going to happen this weekend is going to happen. I don’t have a crystal ball. In all due respect your question, we have to focus on the task at hand.”

The first year head coach was also asked if his kids had asked him about anthem protests.

“My kids at home, have not,” he said.  “Not to get personal, but they haven’t. I understand where you’re coming from.  There are certain teachable moments in life and I would say that communication is important in terms of our family and our football team. We had a great meeting Saturday night with (owners) Terry and Kim (Pegula) and that is exactly what unfolded, was great communication. That’s the first step is that we can share openly and communicate with one another.”

The Bills travel to Atlanta on Sunday. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m.

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