NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said Tuesday that he believes “everyone should stand for the National Anthem.”
Goodell said the controversy over NFL players kneeling in protest during the anthem “is threatening to erode the unifying power of our game and is now dividing us, and our players, from many fans across the country.”
“Like many of our fans we believe that everyone should stand for the National Anthem. It is an important moment in our game. We want to honor our flag and our country, and our fans expect that of us,” Goodell added in his statement.
“We also care deeply about our players and respect their opinions and concerns about critical social issues. The controversy over the anthem is a barrier to having honest conversations and making real progress on the underlying issues. We need to move past this controversy, and we want to do that together with our players.”
The commissioner said that the NFL has “worked to develop a plan that we will review with you at next week’s League meeting.”
Goodell said it will include items like a platform to promote the work of players on “these core issues,” and said the league will “continue the unprecedented dialogue with our players.”
In letter to NFL owners, Goodell says, "[W]e believe that everyone should stand for the National Anthem."
— Mark Murray (@mmurraypolitics) October 10, 2017
Here's the full letter from Roger Goodell to the clubs. Clearly seeking a compromise with the players. pic.twitter.com/icPDCZCpsM
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) October 10, 2017
Considering that Trump has made this a central issue recently, demanding NFL players stand for the anthem, the Goodell memo could be seen as a win for the president.
This view was immediately expressed by some on Twitter:
Trump has won in forcing black men to heel: NFL sends letter, wants players to stand for anthem https://t.co/XOuCuyuDp9
— (((DeanObeidallah))) (@Deanofcomedy) October 10, 2017
Trump won. https://t.co/A9Kqw0Vujk
— Comfortably Smug (@ComfortablySmug) October 10, 2017
Who won? Trump won. https://t.co/EE0quSi0eo
— Chris Stigall (@ChrisStigall) October 10, 2017
TRUMP BREAKS NFL:
Roger Goodell says: "We believe that everyone should stand for the National Anthem." pic.twitter.com/z76itp5X7n
— Ryan Saavedra 🇺🇸 (@RealSaavedra) October 10, 2017