(CNN) — A group representing police in St. Louis says it’s infuriated after five St. Louis Rams players raised their hands Sunday in solidarity with protesters upset at Michael Brown’s death.

The St. Louis Police Officers Association says it’s “profoundly disappointed” with those football players who sent a silent but strong message before they took the field Sunday against the Oakland Raiders.

Stedman Bailey, Tavon Austin, Jared Cook, Chris Givens and Kenny Britt walked onto the field and raised their palms in the air, demonstrating the “hands up, don’t shoot” gesture that protesters in Ferguson have been using for months.

Some say that Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, had his arms up when a white police officer, Darren Wilson, shot him to death August 9 in Ferguson, a St. Louis suburb. Wilson and others say Brown was not trying to surrender and in fact was attacking Wilson.

A grand jury decided last week not to indict Wilson, leading to protests nationwide.

The football players’ action sparked widespread reaction across social media. Some drew parallels between what the Rams players did and the black power salute by two black Olympians from the United States at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City.

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