And that's exactly what they did before Sunday's game against the Seattle Seahawks.
McNair made the statement during a recent owners meeting in NY, where he encouraged the league to take a hard stance against players who knee during the national anthem.
McNair issued an apology on Saturday, essentially stating that he's bad at metaphors.
About Texans players stood during the anthem, but locked arms with the players who chose to kneel.
He says he wasn't referring to the players in what he calls a "very regretful comment".
McNair's comments have not been well-received in any part of NFL circles, with players from all around the league ripping him during the latter part of this week.
In the end, after reported conversations that included ripping off the Texans logo from their helmet, the Houston players - almost all of them - took a knee during the playing of "The Star-Spangled Banner".
McNair met with the players on Saturday, then released another statement in which he claimed the "inmates" comment was a reference to the league office, not the players.
There was also talk of players on the Texans possibly not even coming out for the anthem or removing the decals from their helmets.
Texans left tackle Duane Brown said before the game that he expected "up to 65 to 70 percent" of the team's players to kneel.
Multiple reports indicate that a majority of Texans players will be kneeling during the national anthem.
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