NFL Won't Require Players to Stand for National Anthem

President Trump supported the idea of the NFL simply banning protests during the national anthem. Trump has said the protests are unpatriotic and disrespectful of military veterans.

"We have about six or seven players that are involved in this protest at this point", Goodell told reporters after a two-day meeting with team owners and the players' labor union in New York City, saying he hoped that number would eventually be zero. "Add your name below to show your patriotism and support", the petition reads. It does not say how many signatures it has garnered so far. "That's what we had yesterday to make sure we understand one another and understand where they're coming from, and I think out of those discussions, they understand the owners and the National Football League really do care about their issues and what we can do to make the communities better".

That announcement came at a meeting of team owners in NY in the wake of the ongoing protest controversy, which stems from free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick's original protest of racial injustice by taking a knee last season during pregame performances of the national anthem.

Trump tweeted his disapproval of the decision.

"The NFL has decided that it will not force players to stand for the playing of our National Anthem". And it's also for us to honor our flag and our country, and we think our fans expect us to do that. The demonstrations began a year ago with former San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who has been unable to find a new team after leaving the 49ers.

Some of the league's 32 team owners, including Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys, have said they will bench players who do not stand for the anthem.

More players have begun kneeling since Trump criticized the practice, and some sympathetic teammates have linked arms with the kneelers while standing themselves.

  • Joey Payne