NFL (NEWS CENTER) -- A large group of Patriots players, including cornerback Malcolm Butler, knelt during the national anthem prior to Sunday's game against the Texans.

NFL players used the national anthem to show their defiance to President Donald Trump's criticism.

The President comments about owners firing players who kneel during the national anthem sparked massive protests around the National Football League.

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More than 130 players sat, knelt or raised their fists in defiance during the games, according to the Associated Press.

NBC News reports, Tom Brady was seen standing while locking arms with his teammate Phillip Dorsett.

The form of protest started last season by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.