The NFL has refused to comment on reports that Barbadian singer Rihanna declined an invitation to headline the Super Bowl half-time show in support of Colin Kaepernick.
Quarterback Kaepernick, 30, was the first player to kneel during the US national anthem.
Other players followed suit, leading to criticism from President Donald Trump.
A source close to the singer reportedly told US Weekly magazine that Rihanna “does not agree with the NFL’s stance”.
Maroon 5 will now headline the show, which will take place on 3 February in Atlanta, Georgia.
Players who refused to stand during The Star-Spangled Banner have said the protests were a reaction to police brutality against African Americans and racial inequality. Read more