Jerry Jones won’t stand for kneeling.
The Dallas Cowboys owner insisted Sunday that any player on his team who protests during the national anthem going forward will be punished.
“… If there is anything that is disrespectful to the flag, then we will not play,” Jones told reporters in Dallas after the Cowboys’ 35-31 loss to the Green Bay Packers, via The Dallas Morning News. “You understand? If we are disrespecting the flag, then we won’t play. Period.
“We’re going to respect the flag, and I’m going to create the perception of it. And we have.”
The timing of Jones’ statement is interesting, considering the Cowboys owner knelt with his players on the field just two weeks ago in an apparent show of solidarity. That demonstration happened before the anthem, however, so Jones apparently deemed it “respectful” to the American flag.
Cowboys defensive linemen Damontre’ Moore and David Irving both raised their fists at the conclusion of the anthem Sunday, but Jones didn’t say whether he considers those protests to be “disrespectful” or not.
Either way, it appears Jones is siding with Donald Trump after discussing the issue of NFL protests with the President in late September. Jones also commended Vice President Mike Pence for leaving the Indianapolis Colts’ game early Sunday after a few players knelt during the anthem.
“We cannot in the NFL in any way give the implication that we tolerate disrespecting the flag,” Jones added. “I know the vice president did leave, because in his opinion the teams were. We know that there is a serious debate in this country about those issues, but there is no question in my mind that the National Football League and the Dallas Cowboys are going to stand up for the flag. Just so we’re clear.”
The Cowboys will play the San Francisco 49ers on the road next Sunday.
Thumbnail photo via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports Images