Donald Trump Commends Jerry Jones for Saying Players Must Stand During Anthem

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJuly 27, 2018

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump points to the American flag after speaking at a campaign rally at the University of Northern Colorado, in Greeley, Colo., Sunday, Oct. 30, 2016. (AP Photo/ Brennan Linsley)
Brennan Linsley/Associated Press

United States President Donald Trump applauded Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones for mandating that members of his NFL team stand on the sideline during the national anthem.

"Way to go Jerry," Trump wrote Friday morning on Twitter. "This is what the league should do!"

Although NFL owners approved a plan in May that would allow the league to fine teams who have a player kneel during the anthem, enforcement of the new policy is on hold after the Players Association announced a "standstill agreement" July 20 while the matter is discussed.

The owners' guidelines would have allowed players to remain in the locker room during the anthem, but Jones said Wednesday that anyone on the Cowboys is expected on the field.

"Our policy is that you stand at the anthem, toe on the line," he told reporters.

Trump has been a staunch critic of the NFL's handling of the anthem issue. In September, he suggested owners should fire players who don't stand for "The Star-Spangled Banner," per Sophie Tatum of CNN.

"For a week, (that owner would) be the most popular person in this country," Trump said. "Because that's a total disrespect of our heritage. That's a total disrespect for everything we stand for."

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said in October "We want our players to stand."

No timetable has been provided for a final decision on an anthem policy for the 2018 campaign. The NFL preseason begins Aug. 2 and the regular season kicks off Sept. 6.