At a rally in Alabama, Trump called players that protest “sons of bitches,” and called on NFL owners to fire protesters.
He even received pushback from the New England Patriots, despite their ties to Trump—owner Robert Kraft, head coach Bill Belichick, and quarterback Tom Brady all have friendly relationships with the 45th president.
“I am deeply disappointed by the tone of the comments made by the President on Friday,” Kraft said in a statement released on Sunday morning. “I am proud to be associated with so many players who make such tremendous contributions in positively impacting our communities. Their efforts, both on and off the field, help bring people together and make our community stronger. There is no greater unifier in this country than sports and, unfortunately, nothing more divisive than politics. I think our political leaders could learn a lot from the lessons of teamwork and the importance of working together toward a common goal. Our players are intelligent, thoughtful and care deeply about our community and I support their right to peacefully affect social change and raise awareness in a manner that they feel is most impactful.”
After the Patriots took the field on Sunday, they linked arms during the anthem. Some knelt and some didn’t.
Players’ decisions to kneel led some hometown fans to boo. The Patriots’ opponents, the Houston Texans, all stood and also linked arms.
— AP NFL (@AP_NFL) September 24, 2017
Apparently to those fans, kneeling during the national anthem = bad; booing during the national anthem = totally fine.
Hours later, the same boobirds would be on their feet screaming their support for the Patriots, as Brady, down by five to rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson, led his team down the field on a two-minute drill to find Brandin Cooks in the end zone for what would stand as the game-winning touchdown in a 36-33 victory.
TOM BRADY DOES IT AGAIN!!!!!
HIS GAME WINNING TOUCHDOWN PASS TO BRANDIN COOKS IS EVEN BETTER WITH TITANIC MUSIC!!!
— 🚢Titanic TD🏈 (@TitanicTD) September 24, 2017