President Donald Trump tweeted on Wednesday morning that the Dallas Cowboys would stand for the national anthem, saying he had talked to the team’s owner, Jerry Jones.
“Spoke to Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys yesterday,” Trump tweeted. “Jerry is a winner who knows how to get things done. Players will stand for Country!”
Trump last week said NFL owners should fire any athlete who “disrespects the flag” by kneeling during the anthem.
The NFL has played the national anthem before games for decades, but it wasn’t until 2009 that it started playing the song with the players on the field.
In 2016, Colin Kaepernick, a quarterback who at the time was playing for the San Francisco 49ers, protested police treatment of minorities by sitting during the anthem. The move divided and politicized the NFL. The controversy had mostly faded from conversation this season as Kaepernick has been without a team, but it flared back up after Trump spoke out against players who did not stand for the anthem.