NFL Star Honors Pat Tillman With Game Day Cleats

The U.S. Army has opened a new investigation into the circumstances of the April death in Afghanistan of Cpl. Pat Tillman, a former professional football player killed in a "probable" friendly fire incident, officials said on December 6, 2004. The investigation was ordered on November 3 by then-acting Army Secretary Les Brownlee and was prompted by questions raised by Tillman's family about his death in a remote canyon in southeastern Afghanistan, Army officials said. One official said the investigation could trigger criminal charges if any U.S. personnel are deemed culpable in his death. Tillman is pictured in this June 2003 file photograph. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY REUTERS/Photography Plus C/O Stealth Media Solutions/Handout SV - RTRZSKL

David Hookstead Sports And Entertainment Editor
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Cincinnati Bengals star tight end Tyler Eifert honored Pat Tillman with his game day cleats Sunday.

Eifert wore cleats with the regular Bengals colors, and wrote “Pat Tillman” on both of his shoes.

A post shared by Tyler Eifert (@tylereifert) on

Tillman played for the Arizona Cardinals before leaving the NFL so he could join the Army Rangers. He was killed by friendly fire during a mission in Afghanistan in 2004.

Eifert also recently explained why he stands during the national anthem and will never kneel. He wrote in part:

I stand because I love my country.

I stand because my cousin is a pilot in the United States Air Force, risking his life flying F-15s in active war zones. He takes pride in his job protecting Americans, a sacrifice that all members of every branch of the United States military willfully take.

For the first game this weekend against the Baltimore Ravens, I am writing Pat Tillman’s name on my cleats. And each game thereafter, I am going to write another person’s name from the United States military, whether active, retired, killed or missing in action, or a prisoner of war. These people are why I am standing because they gave me and everyone else the chance to have freedom and earn a living playing a sport I love.

It’ll be interesting to see if any players have special cleats or other tributes for the victims of 9/11 during the two games tonight.

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