On Friday, Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott made it clear he has no plans to kneel during the national anthem this season.
"I never protest," Prescott told reporters at Cowboys training camp in Oxnard, California (via the Dallas Morning News). "I never protest during the anthem, and I don't think that's the time or the venue to do so. The game of football has always brought me such peace, and I think it does the same for a lot of people -- a lot of people playing the game, a lot of people watching the game, a lot of people who have any impact of the game -- so when you bring such controversy to the stadium, to the field, to the game it takes away. It takes away from that, it takes away from the joy and the love that football brings a lot of people."
He added that he is "up for anything" to help address social injustice and police brutality, the issues former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick aimed to draw attention to by kneeling during the national anthem in the 2016 season. Prescott's comments came one day after Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones said his players have to stand for the national anthem "if they want to be a Dallas Cowboy," and the Dallas quarterback's stance drew skepticism from one of the newest members of the Silver and Black.
Oakland Raiders linebacker Tahir Whitehead tweeted late Saturday night that it "[s]ounds like Dak don't wanna lose" a new endoresement deal.
Sounds like Dak don't wanna lose that Campbells Chunky Soup deal!🤷🏾♂️🤦🏾♂️🙄🤡🤡🤡— Tahir Whitehead (@Big_Tah47) July 29, 2018
Prescott's deal with Campbell's, which he signed last month, runs through 2020.
As a member of the Detroit Lions last year, Whitehead was one of eight players to kneel during the anthem in Week 3. The protest came shortly after President Donald Trump said at a rally that NFL owners should "fire" protesting players and "get that son of a b--- off the field."
The Raiders signed Whitehead to a three-year deal in March. In May, Oakland owner Mark Davis reportedly abstained from voting on the NFL's national anthem policy mandating players on the sidelines stand during the anthem, according to ESPN's Seth Wickersham.
On July 20, the NFL and NFLPA issued a joint statement saying "no new rules relating to the anthem will be issued or enforced for the next several weeks" after the Associated Press reported that the Miami Dolphins filed a document with the league proposing the team would suspend players who did not stand during the anthem for up to four games.