Ahead of Thursday’s game against the Oakland Raiders, a cheerleader for the San Francisco 49ers was seen taking a knee on the field

By Maria Pasquini
November 02, 2018 12:39 PM
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Credit: John Hefti/AP/REX/Shutterstock

Ahead of Thursday’s game against the Oakland Raiders, a cheerleader for the San Francisco 49ers was seen taking a knee on the field.

In photos taken from the game, a brunette cheerleader, who has yet to be identified, can be seen kneeling in the back row of a formation during the National Anthem, while the rest of her squad stands on their feet while shaking their pom poms.

Multiple outlets are reporting that this is the first time an NFL cheerleader has taken the knee.

The #TakeAKnee movement began in 2016, when former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick declined to stand for the national anthem at games in protest of police brutality and the racial injustices faced by people of color in America.

The San Francisco 49ers did not immediately reply to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

Henny Herold, one of the Twitter users who first posted images of the protest act, told the Huffington Post he didn’t notice any big reaction on the field after she took the knee.

“No one else that I know of noticed or reacted,” he shared. “She stayed with her teammates for the rest of the game, and they appeared to support her.”

RELATED VIDEO: NFL Players Show United Front Against Trump by Kneeling and Locking Arms During National Anthem

In a 2017 interview with Elle, several former NFL cheerleaders told the outlet why they believed cheerleaders had yet to join the protest.

“Many of us have other jobs while we are cheering, there are doctors and politicians out there on the field. We do this because we love to dance, and our job as cheerleaders isn’t to create controversy,” one former cheerleader, who chose to remain anonymous, told the outlet. “It’s to make everyone happy.”

While this seems like the first time an NFL cheerleader has ever taken the knee, in 2017, five cheerleaders at Georgia’s Kennesaw State University were seen kneeling during the national anthem. At another game that year, one cheerleader from Georgia Tech were seen taking a knee.