D's Take: Day 1 of National Football League owners meetings


The issue is to find ways for National Football League teams and players to reach common ground to address problems of inequality and unfairness that exist in many communities.

TV ratings are sagging.

Goodell also said the league wanted to stay out of the political arena over the issue. Is this any way to try to run a business and maintain its vast prosperity and popularity? "We have a great deal of support for the efforts of our players".

Secondly, and more importantly, President Donald Trump should focus his early-morning internet rants to helping the Florida Keys, Puerto Rico, and all Americans devastated by hurricanes, instead of inciting dissidence and protest in football, or antagonizing war with yet another nation, or defending demonstrators carrying Nazi and Confederate flags.

New York Giants co-owner John Mara afterward articulated the prevailing view, one that makes more sense, too.

I think there should be a federal law prohibiting display of the Confederate flag. Yes, Goodell said, then listed several. Commissioner Roger Goodell said the league believes "everyone should stand" when the anthem is played. "Communities that I've come from", he said.

With players like this the National Basketball Association can hold up on its own and is steadily growing in popularity.

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Will it work? That remains to be seen. "But we want to make sure that we are understanding what the players are talking about, and that's complex". There is no way to know for certain, now that the owners have chosen a different path.

Goodell was asked whether he and the owners truly understand what kinds of changes protesting players seek.

The commissioner said that about half a dozen players are still protesting, and the National Football League will "try to get that to zero."We need to make real differences in our community". The NFL players are advocating for social change by using disrespect. But players, at least, generally expressed positive reactions to what they heard from owners. Join us in a conversation about world events, the newsgathering process or whatever aspect of the news universe you find interesting or important. President Trump has previously called for players who kneel to be fired, and referred to them as "sons of bitches".

What should communicators take away from the NFL's continuing backlash over player protests? Colin Kaepernick in fact was striving for a respectful form of protest when he began "taking a knee", and, contrary to Mr. Gonsalves's opinion, showed quite a bit of courage in doing so. "Our players are protesting to get awareness". They have awareness. When you have the president tweeting about you, when you have the vice president making comments, that's awareness.

"We're going to continue to work to try to put that at zero".

The NFL has been around since 1921 and even though there has been issues before there hasn't been as much controversy as there has been recently. Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said any of his players kneeling during the anthem risked being benched. He talked at length during the owners' meeting Wednesday but left without speaking to reporters. "The NFL has decided that it will not force players to stand for the playing of our National Anthem", Trump said.

"I think there's a consensus to keep having dialogue", Mara said. "That's not going to be the policy of my team". The players then stood for presentation of Great Britain's anthem "God Save the Queen".