The impetus of the tweet was reports that Dallas Cowboys players have been given the “green light” to protest.
Such reports came after defensive lineman Tyrone Crawford said the green light was “to feel however we’re feeling, express how we’re feeling and say whatever we need to say.”
Team owner Jerry Jones also said last week that NFL players ‘need help from a majority of America’ when it comes to respecting players’ protests.
No Dallas Cowboys player has knelt during the anthem in the four years since Colin Kaepernick first sparked a wave of protests against racial injustices and police brutality.
“Football is officially dead — so much for ‘America’s sport.’ Goodbye NFL… I’m gone,” Eric Trump wrote on Twitter.
On Friday, while appearing on Dallas radio station 105.3 The Fan, Jones shifted his tone regarding players protesting during the national anthem, urging fans to respect the fact that players’ opinions are diverse.
“That’s the great thing about America: Everybody has a difference,” Jones said. “If our players are there, they are sensitive to and respect what America is as it relates to the flag. I’ll assure you that. I’d hope that our fans — and I think they will — understand that our players have issues that they need help on. They need help from the majority of America.”
“What our players are doing is being mischaracterized. These are not people who are unpatriotic. They’re not disloyal. They’re not against our military,” Goodell said. “What they were trying to do is exercise their right to bring attention to something that needs to get fixed. That misrepresentation of who they were and what they were doing was the thing that really gnawed at me.”
In 2017, President Trump struck a nerve with NFL players when he implored team owners to fire players for protesting during the national anthem. Those comments prompted a league-wide show of solidarity.
There is no doubt that recent incidents of police brutality toward Black people will spark protests during the national anthem during the 2020 NFL season.
Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie is seemingly braced for the possibility that NFL players could stage a protest that shuts down games similar to what transpired in the NBA, WNBA, MLS, NHL and with some MLB teams.
“I’m not concerned because I’m supportive of everything that’s involved in terms of trying to create attention and change,” Lurie said last week. “I’ve always been that way. And if we have to sacrifice, we have to sacrifice.”