It was announced Wednesday that the NFL would begin doling out fines to teams for every player who kneels during the National Anthem at games.
ESPN reports the revised policy also gives players the option to stay in the locker room during the song without facing any sanctions. Even though the changes were unanimously approved, one team owner says he'll foot the bill for players who decide to protest during the anthem. New York Jets CEO Christopher Johnson told Newsday, "As I I have in the past, I will support our players wherever we land as a team...If the team gets fined, that's just something I'll have to bear."
Johnson even alluded to the fact that there was a previous, harsher solution than the one that passed. "...the plan we ended up with, due to some serious work in the [meeting] room, was vastly less onerous than the one that was presented to me late last week."
Two things are important to point out here. First, Johnson's older brother, Woody, is President Trump's ambassador to the United Kingdom. Last year, the president had some harsh words for players who followed Colin Kaepernick's lead. "Get that son of a b***h off the field right now, he's fired. He's fired!" Mr. Trump infamously belted at an Alabama rally in September. Second, not a single Jets player knelt during the anthem. Instead, they stood side by side and locked arms. Johnson stood right by them.
The Jets aren't alone in their stance. San Francisco 49ers ower Jed York sat out from voting on the anthem, saying he thinks the league should take a closer look at the whole thing. York said the team won't be making any concession sales during the anthem. "I don't think we should be profiting if we're going to put this type of attention and focus on the field and on the flag," he said.