"The President has asked for a list of supporters who stand for the National Anthem", the Trump/Pence campaign website said on Thursday. The owners chose to not force players to stand for the anthem, and Goodell was clearly displeased, but supported the decision. Total lack of respect to our great country!
This week, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell held a series of press conferences to attempt to stop the bleeding from the outcry over mass national anthem protests which have gripped the NFL. "We agreed that these are common issues and pledged to meet again to continue this work together". In a Twitter post on Wednesday, he called the NFL's decision, "Too much talk, not enough action".
President Donald Trump ramped things up several weeks ago when he said during a rally speech in Alabama that National Football League owners should fire players who take a knee for the anthem.
"We're not afraid of the tough conversations", he said.
While the president and the league appeared to have reached a stalemate, some fans have said they are heeding Trump's calls to boycott games while the kneeling continues, which Trump has said is unpatriotic and an insult to the country's military veterans. The president has targeted the protests as disrespecting the flag and the troops, when in fact, the players and others participating in the protests have specifically stated that they are taking a knee in protest of the racial inequality in the United States. "That's what we're having with our players. What we try to do is deal with the underlying issue and understand what it is that they're protesting and try to address that matter".
More players have begun kneeling since Trump criticized the practice, and some sympathetic teammates have linked arms with the kneelers while standing themselves. Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said any of his players kneeling during the anthem risked being benched.