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Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones says Trump 'problematic' for NFL

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has acknowledged that US President Donald Trump's comments on the ongoing NFL anthem...

Posted: Jul 26, 2018 4:38 PM
Updated: Jul 26, 2018 4:38 PM

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has acknowledged that US President Donald Trump's comments on the ongoing NFL anthem debate is proving damaging to the league.

"His interest in what we're doing is problematic from my chair, and I would say in general the owners' chair," Jones said at a press conference on Wednesday to mark the start of the Cowboys training camp in Oxnard, California.

Cowboys owner calls Trump statements "problematic"

Jones affirms team's rule to stand for anthem

Maintains Papa John's affiliation

"It's unprecedented if you really think about it. Yes I would like -- everybody would like -- for it to go away."

Jones became the second NFL owner this week to weigh in on the matter. Cincinnati Bengals owner Mike Brown said on Tuesday that Trump's views on the NFL had "worked against" the league.

"I think it stirred the pot," Brown said to reporters. "It got people looking at it unfavorably, and he has worked that issue for, I suppose, political reasons."

Trump blasted the NFL on Twitter last week when the league froze its policy mandating that players either stand for the anthem or wait in the locker room, noting the "national anthem debate is alive and well again."

Referring to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, Trump tweeted "The $40,000,000 Commissioner must now make a stand. First time kneeling, out for game. Second time kneeling, out for season/no pay!"

Although the NFL is ironing out details with the players' association and won't have a rule in place "for several weeks," Jones said his players will stand regardless, and will not have the option of protesting out of sight in the locker room.

"It did not impact our position," he said. "Our position is very clear in that you should stand."

Jones, who purchased the team in 1989, said the Cowboys "always had a written policy in place," though NFL players typically did not take the field for the anthem until 2009.

Though he did not detail how the Cowboys would enforce the anthem policy, last October Jones -- who doubles as the team's general manager -- threatened to bench any player who took a knee.

His stance came just a few weeks after he kneeled with entire team before the playing of the anthem at a game in Glendale, Arizona.

That unifying symbol -- echoed in different ways by other owners -- was a reaction to Trump calling out protesting players at a rally in September, saying "Get that son of a bitch off the field."

READ: NFL anthem policy put on hold

READ: Where is the European Colin Kaepernick?

Papa John's controversy

Although the anthem protest had quieted down by the end of 2017, NFL ratings reportedly declined by nearly 10% last season.

The figure had owners and sponsors nervous, sparking former Papa John's CEO John Schnatter to complain in an earnings call that the NFL debate "should have been nipped in the bud a year and a half ago."

"The controversy is polarizing the customer, polarizing the country," he added, while partially blaming the league for poor sales.

By February, Papa John's pulled its NFL sponsorship, which had been in place since 2010, but three months later, Schattner admitted to using a racial slur and was on his way out as CEO.

When asked about the Cowboys' Papa John's link on Tuesday, Jones noted that the team owned the pizza franchises in Texas and would not be severing its relationship with the company as other sports teams -- including the New York Yankees -- had.

"Our Cowboys are the big face of Papa John's," he said, adding that Schnatter ideally would like a "do over" -- a chance to take those words back.

Jones arguably has the most to lose by a decline in NFL ratings. This month the Cowboys were listed by Forbes as the most valuable sports team in the world at $4.8 billion.

The valuation topped those of soccer giants Real Madrid, Barcelona and Manchester United -- and was over $1 billion more than five-time Super Bowl champions New England Patriots, valued at $3.7 billion.

Players and league at a 'Standstill'

Last week the NFL issued a joint statement with the NFLPA saying they had reached a "standstill" on how players are allowed to protest but were engaging in "constructive dialogue."

The statement followed accusations by the NFLPA that the NFL policy released in May "infringes on players' rights."

It also came two days after Tennessee Titans star lineman Jurrell Casey told CNN he would protest on the sideline during the national anthem and pay whatever fine necessary.

"Around the NFL, guys are definitely not happy about it," Casey said. "I feel it's not right, I don't think it was a good decision for the NFL to come up with that ruling."

The NFL regular season starts on Thursday September 6.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 95310

Reported Deaths: 2874
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds7063159
DeSoto552159
Harrison382973
Jackson345670
Madison326586
Rankin325677
Lee268368
Jones246879
Forrest245571
Washington221972
Lafayette215439
Lauderdale2044125
Bolivar182366
Oktibbeha177350
Lamar167534
Neshoba1559104
Lowndes152658
Panola146328
Sunflower144546
Warren140250
Leflore139581
Pontotoc125916
Pike123050
Monroe122168
Scott117327
Copiah117133
Coahoma115028
Holmes109558
Marshall109217
Lincoln108353
Grenada107736
Yazoo105530
Simpson102544
Union99324
Tate97637
Leake95338
Adams93037
Wayne89421
Pearl River87353
Marion85735
Prentiss84417
Covington81922
Itawamba79421
Alcorn79111
Newton76723
George76513
Tallahatchie76321
Winston73719
Tishomingo67238
Chickasaw67024
Tippah66517
Attala65425
Walthall59825
Clay58918
Clarke58145
Hancock57721
Jasper56815
Noxubee54816
Smith53114
Calhoun51312
Tunica48313
Claiborne46216
Montgomery45920
Lawrence43112
Yalobusha42814
Perry41918
Humphreys37615
Quitman3725
Stone37012
Greene36617
Jefferson Davis33911
Webster33613
Amite32510
Carroll31512
Wilkinson30318
Kemper28815
Sharkey26513
Jefferson2449
Benton2252
Franklin1923
Choctaw1816
Issaquena1043
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 133433

Reported Deaths: 2349
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson19441349
Mobile13271291
Montgomery8778179
Madison775480
Tuscaloosa7496119
Shelby584951
Lee582961
Baldwin516550
Marshall390944
Calhoun346641
Etowah342047
Morgan325428
Houston278123
Elmore263247
DeKalb239120
Walker228483
St. Clair227837
Talladega212728
Limestone206120
Cullman188519
Dallas177426
Franklin175529
Russell17442
Autauga173825
Lauderdale168233
Colbert163626
Blount159415
Escambia158425
Jackson154611
Chilton153531
Dale135444
Covington134427
Coffee13078
Pike11879
Chambers115142
Tallapoosa114685
Clarke107717
Marion95729
Butler91339
Barbour8577
Winston73712
Marengo70820
Lowndes65327
Pickens65114
Bibb64210
Randolph63713
Hale62828
Lawrence60922
Geneva5995
Bullock59814
Cherokee59115
Monroe5818
Clay5707
Washington55613
Perry5407
Conecuh53111
Crenshaw53132
Wilcox53111
Henry4865
Macon48020
Fayette4438
Sumter43419
Lamar3632
Choctaw34612
Cleburne3396
Greene30315
Coosa1673
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