President Donald Trump on Friday praised Jerry Jones, the owner of the Dallas Cowboys, despite the fact that NFL franchise owner had said the commander-in-chief's involvement with player protests in the league was “problematic.”
Trump tweeted, “Way to go Jerry. This is what the league should do!” along with a link to a Fox Business story that referred to Jones having said that Dallas Cowboys players must stand for the national anthem.
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Trump, however, appeared to ignore Jones’ other remarks, in which he criticized the president for having gotten involved in the matter at all.
"His interest in what we're doing is problematic, from my chair, and I would say in general the owners' chair," Jones said at his team’s Wednesday press conference. "It's unprecedented, if you really think about it. But like the very game itself, that's the way it is and we'll deal with it.”
“We feel strongly about how we deal with it and we’ll do so accordingly, but, yes, I, like everybody, would like for it to go away,” he added.
In May, the NFL announced a new policy mandating that all players who are on the field when the national anthem is heard before a game must stand — or they can choose to remain in the locker room without penalty. Teams would be subject to a fine if a player disobeys, under that policy.
But earlier this month, the league halted enforcement of the rules after the Miami Dolphins franchise was criticized for considering suspensions of players who protest.
The NFL National Anthem Debate is alive and well again - can’t believe it! Isn’t it in contract that players must stand at attention, hand on heart? The $40,000,000 Commissioner must now make a stand. First time kneeling, out for game. Second time kneeling, out for season/no pay!
"It’s unfortunate that you have owners like him who use (their) position to intimidate and intentionally thwart even the idea of players thinking individually or having a voice about issues that affect their communities," Jenkins, a nine-year NFL veteran, said.