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Sports teams reportedly received tax dollars to hold military tributes. Should you be upset?

Sports teams reportedly received tax dollars to hold military tributes. Should you be upset?

By Austin Knoblauch for LA Times

It appears some NFL teams have no problem showing their patriotic colors as long as it comes with a stack of taxpayer green.

According to federal documents obtained by NJ.com, the Department of Defense has paid out millions to NFL teams to finance advertising and game-day military tributes.

From 2011 to 2014, the government paid $5.4 million to 14 NFL teams, who have used some of the money to pay for costs associated with holding patriotic ceremonies and providing perks to military personnel attending the games, the report stated.

The Atlanta Falcons received more than $1 million from the Department of Defense since 2011 and the Baltimore Ravens, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings and Buffalo Bills have each raked in more than $500,000 during the same period, the report stated.

The report comes a week after Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake (R) called out the New Jersey National Guard for its spending agreements with the New York Jets on advertising and game-day salutes. Flake said fans are under the assumption teams are directly paying for the heart-felt tributes. Instead, he argues, it's simply a form of advertising and marketing.

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