Last season, Denver Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall took a stand by taking a knee. A peaceful protest, he was able to invoke change with his efforts, but it did take a toll on him personally.

“It weighed on me mentally, but I was glad I did it,” Marshall told Eric Goodman and Les Shapiro during Afternoon Drive on Mile High Sports Radio. “…Although I brought it on myself, it still took a toll. It’s like okay, I’ve got to study these plays, I’ve got to study this opponent, but then I’ve got to make sure I go meet with these people, make sure I talk to these reporters and do things like that, but I do not regret my decision at all.

“I feel like I created change; and at the end of the day, I lay my head in that pillow at night, and I was able to be comfortable with myself as a man, and what I did, and my morals and values.”

Marshall didn’t just kneel during the national anthem, he sparked a conversation with community leaders. After those conversations, the Denver Police Department revised their use-of-force policy. When they did, Marshall again rose for the Star-Spangled Banner.

A similar stance was taken by (then) San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Now, Marshall’s former college teammate at Nevada is out of a job. Many believe that his protest played a part in that, including Marshall.

“I definitely think so; and I stand by my words that he was the best quarterback in free agency,” Marshall said of Kaepernick. “He’s better than all of the guys that got signed, in my opinion. I guess, looking at an owner’s standpoint, because the quarterback is the face of the franchise usually, maybe they didn’t want that attached to the franchise, but he can still play.”

Though he understands the owners’ perceived perspective, Marshall doesn’t agree with it.

“He didn’t break any laws, he didn’t put his hands on anybody, on a woman, he didn’t have a DUI. He didn’t do anything but [take] a peaceful protest,” Marshall said in defense of Kaepernick. “He’s actually doing a lot for his community; a whole lot. Donating money. He’s doing a lot. So why wouldn’t you want that on your team? He’s being a role model. He just was named one of the top 100 most influential people by Time Magazine. That’s huge. Why would you not want that on your team?”

Listen to the full interview with Brandon Marshall, including his thoughts on the Raiders upcoming move to Las Vegas and what changes to expect for the Broncos defense, in the podcast below.

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Catch Afternoon Drive with Goodman and Shapiro every weekday from 4p-6p on Mile High Sports AM 1340 | FM 104.7 or stream live any time for the best local coverage of Colorado sports from Denver’s biggest sports talk lineup.