Ted Cruz has some more thoughts on NFL players protesting during the national anthem.
In an interview with TMZ outside Reagan Airport in D.C., the Republican Senator from Texas said, “I will say, I think the NFL did itself a lot of harm last year. An awful lot of their fans, folks who go to games and like to cheer on football, found themselves thrust in the middle of politics.
“People ought to be able to enjoy football without it being turned into a political statement that many understandably see as a slight to our flag and to the many people who stood up and fought to defend our country.”
In 2016, Cruz called for a boycott of products promoted by athletes who protest during the national anthem. The proclamation came on the heels of then-49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick taking a knee during the national anthem.
While Cruz has said he supports Kaepernick’s right to protest, he says the still unemployed quarterback should not be doing it during the playing of the anthem.
Whether by design or by accident, Cruz’s comments come just two days after Jerry Jones Jones revealed to local media that he will no longer talk about the topic after he received a directive from the NFL league office.
The move prompted Fox 4’s Mike Doocy to cancel his scheduled interview with the Cowboys’ owner. However, other DFW news outlets still conducted their interviews with Jones.
Jones’ approach to the topic is a sharp departure from his comments last week.
“You know where I stand, our teams know where I stand. That is where we are,” Jones said in a press conference to open training camp in Oxnard, California. “Our policy is you stand during the anthem, toe on the line.”
Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliot, among others, have accepted that edict. Up to this point, not one Cowboys player has spoken out against it.
Several players on other teams have criticized Jones’ stance. Last week Eagles safety Malcolm Butler called Jones a bully.’
On Tuesday, 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman shared his opinion about the subject.
“The owner of the Dallas Cowboys, with the old plantation mentality,” Sherman told USA Today. “What did you expect?”