Report: Jerry Jones told players he wanted to take heat off them

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Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has never minded attention. So it makes some version of sense that he believes he’s doing his players a favor by telling them that they have to stand for the national anthem.

According to Todd Archer of ESPN.com, a source said Jones told his players during yesterday’s meeting that his stance was “rooted in a desire to play the bad guy and deflect attention from the players.”

If only because any attention on players would be attention Jones isn’t getting, that at least seems philosophically consistent for the Cowboys owner.

Most players left after yesterday’s meeting without commenting, and since it’s their bye week, they won’t have to do anything before next week’s league meeting when the topic of anthems and protests will be discussed.

If anything, Jones seems to have his quarterback on board, as Dak Prescott said at a promotional event later Wednesday that the meeting was positive.

“It went well,” Prescott said. “I mean we ironed out everything that we needed to at this time.”

During the meeting, Jones apparently also tried to emphasize the bigger picture regarding the business side of the anthem, which confirms that NFL owners are more worried about green than red, white, and blue. By bringing the specter of sponsors and TV ratings into the equation, Jones can put pressure on players to stand without being overtly paternalistic or worse.

“If there’s anything that is disrespectful to the flag, then we will not play,” Jones said after Sunday’s loss to the Packers. “Understand? We will not … if we are disrespecting the flag, then we will not play. Period.”

Jones might think he’s doing his players a favor, but the other way to look at it is that he’s caving to pressure from President Donald Trump to force players to stand. And some of Jones’ players might have some concerns about that.

59 responses to “Report: Jerry Jones told players he wanted to take heat off them

  1. What do all the flag/anthem supporters have to say about the Astros Josh Reddick parading around the locker room in his celebratory flag speedos? Apparently they don’t consider that to be disrespectful.

  2. The owners are in a tough spot here. It’s easier for sportswriters to pontificate that the owners are caving to Trump (while ensconced in the cheap seats) but the owners are only doing what any successful business person does, listen to their customers.
    And the majority of their customers (and polls aside, are confirmed by comments on this site) don’t like the anthem protest. So do they risk angering their employees or their customers? Either will result in hurt feelings but the latter will ultimately hurt their collective wallets more.

  3. “NFL owners are more worried about green than red, white, and blue.”
    ————————

    100% correct. That is what many of us have been saying about this since it started. Jerry knows it is affecting the bottom line. The players may not realize it until the cap goes down and their pocketbook is affected.

  4. Kaepernick originally said he sat because he wasn’t going to honor the flag for a country that oppressed people. So don’t say that it’s not about the flag. The players have plenty of opportunity to create awareness without alienating those who feel that its disrespectful. Look at what JJ Watt raised for Hurricane relief. Or selling pink items for breast cancer. Or the ice bucket challenge. If you want to gain support, don’t anger millions of people in the process.

  5. I want to see all the yahoos that wrote all the comments supporting jerrah when they thought he was being tough on the players comment now. This the guy that called hardy a “team leader”

    Does any reasonable person have any question at all that jerrah is one of the biggest clowns that have ever owned a professional sports team? Is there?!

  6. jerry jones is watching the ratings plummet and knows it will get much worse if they continue to insult our country. he is trying to take the heat off of his wallet.

  7. Reverse psychology that is what he is using. Typical way of getting someone to do what you want and make it seem they are doing it for the betterment of themselves.

  8. “rooted in a desire to play the bad guy and deflect attention from the players.” No desire needed Jerrah. You nailed that years ago.

  9. The main player that has been outspoken since Goddell wrote his letter is Gerald McCoy…the same idiot that challenged fans to meet him at One Buc Place if they had a problem.

  10. He is not caving to Trump, he had this position last year before Trump ever weighed in. If anything he held up on enforcing his own views just because Trump was squawking and he didnt want the appearance that Trump mattered. Elsewhere in the article (the author rambles and whines more than makes any points) it offers a different argument “NFL owners are more worried about green than red, white, and blue”. As far as whether he is worried about the red white and blue there are some that would feel he is standing up for it, and those that think he is trampling on first amendment rights simply dont know the first amendment. And sure that he is worrying about green is indusputable but come on he is a business owner. Its what he is supposed to worry about.

  11. I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color. To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.
    — Colin Kaepernick, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, Aug. 26, 2016
    —————————–
    It’s about the flag.

  12. No matter the outcome, the players will lose out on this the most. Jerry is right that the bottom line of all of this is the money. More importantly, people should begin to worry about where freedom of speech begins and where it ends, especially with the person that’s in the office of the president.

  13. It’s makes business sense for the Cowboys to stand for the flag because of their designation as “America’s Team”…

    But for Jerry to publicly threaten his players is a bad look. It’s not taking the heat off of them it’s appying more pressure because they’re being viewed as Jerry Jones’ property and not individuals. Like their respect for the Anthem is forced and not genuine. Nobody in the community respects them.

    On another note…Really the 49ers are America’s Team. When the 49ers play in Cowboys stadium we outdraw them in their own stadium.

  14. My God, what a massive and costly waste of time these players have created. Stand for the freakin anthem and then play the freakin game. It’s simple. I mean, if it’s not about the anthem or the flag or the military as they’re saying they surely sitting for THE ANTHEM that the protests aren’t about is the wrong place and the wrong time to try to get a point across.

    And now they’re not even sure what point they’re trying to get across anyway.

  15. @mikeyhigs comparing what J.J. Watt did (raising money for hurricane relief) is a different subject than what kaepernick started. Kaepernick is not asking for money he is asking for justice when unarmed men are gunned down by police without any consequences. So protest that make people uncomfortable usually will continue to shine light on things that you want to keep in the public eye.

  16. I know PERSONALLY over 20 people who no longer watch The NFL because of all this. They were all Steelers or Patriots fans. Now none of them even know what record they have… What will players do when they don’t have the paying customer anymore? No more big checks..Guess they will have to play CFL….See how that works out for you

  17. I say if Jerry Jones wants to take his cues on patriotism from Trump, who dodged the draft five times, then went on to insult our POWs, then I understand why he had to be talked out of drafting Johnny Manziel.

  18. Jones is not caving into our president. He has had this stance since last season. Nice try though….

    What does this have to do about Trump? Like the rest of us, he merely expressed his opinion. The is about an overdue NFL office cleaning

  19. When I look at a flag from another country, I don’t think of their veterans, their active military or the people who died defending that country. I just think of their country. If we look at the US flag that way, we might realize that it represents everything about our country- not just those military things. Included in “everything” is unarmed people of color getting shot by police…unfortunately. It includes hard working immigrants as well. If someone else chooses to not stand for some public patriotism, that’s American too. I’m not offended or surprised. I’m American, I can handle a little social dissent on my TV as long as no one is getting killed or injured. Protest is patriotic too.

  20. The players won’t realize what damage they have done to the game and their salaries until their salary cap goes down. Jones is doing the players a favor. The NFL has a more conservative fan base than liberal so the amount they offend with these protests is high.

  21. Compared to these guys (Jerry and Trump), I am a young man. So I take solace in knowing that they”ll probably be drooling in their respective soups in just a few years. Their opinions shouldn’t matter now because of the apparent signs of senility and they definitely won’t matter THEN.

  22. Oh the horror that our president would like people to respect fallen soldiers who gave their life for our freedoms. Oh the horror that the vast majority of NFL fans expect the same.

  23. If he is going to force the players to stand, he’d better hold up his end of the bargain and lead the way on the “finding more constructive ways” to discuss the inequalities and make changes.

    You can take away the effect, but that doesn’t make the cause disappear. I know Trump supporters forget the whole cause and effect concept. But if police brutality and inequalities continue, we are going to continue to have to talk about it until something is done.

  24. The big issue in perception is that Jones makes a public statement after the president issues a passive aggressive warning about the Mom’s tax status. Most fans know the NFL voluentaliry dropped the not for profit status 3 years ago so it was all bluster on Trump’s part.

    However, that almost threat by the president took this from a work place issue to a Constitution issue. Trump suggests that the NFL lose its tax exempt status if it didn’t make a rule change forcing players to stand. The first amendment exists for stopping precisely these kinds of threats. The President threatens a company for allowing workers to have free speech and the company owner informs his employees the speech will stop. No matter how you feel about this, and despite the fact Trump was ignorant of the NFL’s current tax status, the president used his power to quell legal speech. The president can have and express an opinion, however, he crossed the line when he threatens a private company’s tax status.

    You cannot claim to be a patriot at the same time you disregard the Constitution.

  25. He took away their “voice” in order to take the heat off of them? Hey thanks for cutting my tongue out I might have actually said something rude to somebody!

    All that tells us is that Jerry is surrounded by Trump supporters who tell him the same nonsense that we see here in these comments sections. They are mad at these players and want them to pay!

    Don’t anybody be surprised though… I was stunned when Jerry went down the field and kneeled for the anthem a few weeks ago then it turned out it was BEFORE the anthem and they all stood for it and it all made sense.

    I wish I could be a fly on the wall of Paul Allen’s office as he was talking to somebody about this

  26. **********
    rohinaz says:
    October 12, 2017 at 9:59 am
    Oh the horror that our president would like people to respect fallen soldiers who gave their life for our freedoms. Oh the horror that the vast majority of NFL fans expect the same.
    **********

    The prez likes publicity stunts. If he respected fallen soldiers who gave up everything for our freedoms, he wouldn’t have slammed POW’s and Gold Star families in the most disgusting public display ever showcased by anyone. And, he wouldn’t have dodged the draft.

  27. bigdaddystyle says:
    October 12, 2017 at 9:21 am
    When I look at a flag from another country, I don’t think of their veterans, their active military or the people who died defending that country. I just think of their country. If we look at the US flag that way, we might realize that it represents everything about our country- not just those military things. Included in “everything” is unarmed people of color getting shot by police…unfortunately. It includes hard working immigrants as well. If someone else chooses to not stand for some public patriotism, that’s American too. I’m not offended or surprised. I’m American, I can handle a little social dissent on my TV as long as no one is getting killed or injured. Protest is patriotic too.

    ——–

    Some good points. Every country has its issues and problems but if someone dislikes the country enough to snub the flag maybe it is time for them to find a new country in which to live.

  28. bam5239 says:
    October 12, 2017 at 10:09 am
    The big issue in perception is that Jones makes a public statement after the president issues a passive aggressive warning about the Mom’s tax status. Most fans know the NFL voluentaliry dropped the not for profit status 3 years ago so it was all bluster on Trump’s part.
    ________________________________________________

    You DO realize, of course, that corporations can get all kinds of tax breaks even though they’re fort profit, right? Please tell me you know this.

  29. You can’t respect the military and support a draft dodger for president at the same time. It’s just a lie, and the players know that. Everyone knows that. A lot of us are liars.

  30. Other than the fact the ratings haven’t plummeted and that is a farce. Has anybody taken into account there’s a large sector of NFL fans who stream the games? You can’t calculate ratings from streams, you can try to regulate the streaming, but the majority of people I know, albeit I’m young, stream NFL games.

  31. The thing is Jerry doesn’t need to protect his players as they are already protected just like all the rest of Americans by something called the
    Constitution Of The United States Of America….

  32. “The players won’t realize what damage they have done to the game and their salaries until their salary cap goes down. Jones is doing the players a favor. The NFL has a more conservative fan base than liberal so the amount they offend with these protests is high.”
    ___________________________________________________________________________

    Here’s where the irony of the situation is with talking conservatives and being offended. The group that states that people in this country are too easily offended, are the very ones that are taking such offense to these protests. Rather amusing 🙂

  33. “Isn’t this the same Jerry Jones that was on the floor kneeling with his players just a few weeks ago?”

    __________________________________________________________________________________________________

    In that case, I think that he and the team were kneeling BEFORE the anthem in solidarity.

  34. I don’t think the kneeling for the anthem is the way to go about getting your message across. It doesn’t make me uncomfortable. I’m not going to change my opinion that players should stand for the flag and that is where their protest loses me. I lose site of what they are actually protesting because of the manner in which they choose to protest it. If they were allowed to show videos where players spoke about the actual issues either before the game or post them on Youtube or NFL.com or something I would pay a lot more attention to that.

  35. I don’t think the kneeling for the anthem is the way to go about getting your message across.
    ==============================================================================================

    It was a veteran Green Beret (Nate Boyer) who told Kaepernick that kneeling WAS the best way to get his message across. That’s why he stopped sitting on the bench during the anthem and started kneeling instead.

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