Several NFL owners and player representatives met in NY on Tuesday to discuss the ongoing protests against racial injustice during the national anthem before games and decided not to take any action to penalize players participating in the protests.
Earlier on Wednesday, Trump expressed his anger at the previous day's news that the National Football League rulebook, which says players "should" stand for the anthem but stops short of mandating it, was not being changed any time soon.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell made clear he will take a more patient approach than the one urged by the president: Rather than using discipline, the league will continue to nurture players' efforts to fight racial disparities in the criminal justice system, believing this would make the urge to protest fade. So sorry, Donald, you don't get to impose your will on people by making mean tweets about them. Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said any of his players kneeling during the anthem risked being benched. "Add your name below to show your patriotism and support".
"We just had two days of conversations with our owners of which this was a fair amount of the conversation and I think our clubs all see this the same way", Goodell said on Wednesday, per USA Today.
Trump has sparred with the NFL and the players who have protested during the National Anthem, putting himself in the middle of a controversy with significant racial and cultural undertones. "We spent today talking about the issues that players have been trying to bring attention to - issues to make our communities better. that was the entire focus of today". The players then stood for presentation of Great Britain's anthem "God Save the Queen". "We agreed that these are common issues and pledged to meet again to continue this work together".