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Jerry Jones and the Cowboys took a knee before the national anthem

The Cowboys kneeled prior to the national anthem Monday, but stood for the performance.

The Dallas Cowboys took a knee Monday prior to the national anthem, but stood for the performance with locked arms. The Arizona Cardinals did the same, joining a lengthy list of NFL athletes who protested in some form before Week 3 games after Donald Trump made divisive comments throughout the weekend.

Joining the Cowboys for the kneel prior to anthem — which drew boos from the Arizona crowd — were owner Jerry Jones and coach Jason Garrett.

Both teams stood for the national anthem with linked arms.

After the game, Garrett explained how the team arrived at the decision to kneel before the national anthem. He said that after two days of discussions, involving players, coaches, and ownership, they came to an agreement.

“How do we achieve these two objectives: how do we somehow, some way convene unity, some how, some way convene the importance of equality in our country, and do so without in any way involving the American flag and the national anthem. And that's what we came up with,” Garrett said.

Jones added that he had never been prouder of the team.

“I can’t say enough about the understanding and the awareness of our team, and these young men that basically said, ‘you know, that makes sense.’ There’s no need for us to talk about unity and equality and have 60 percent of this country mad at you because you’re not perceived to be honoring the flag,” Jones said. “And this was a way to do both.”

The Cowboys’ Monday Night Football game against the Arizona Cardinals was both teams’ first game since Trump said Friday during a rally that NFL owners should fire any “son of a bitch” who protests during the national anthem. He doubled down on those comments with tweets on Saturday and Sunday.

For Dallas players, protesting in any regard is especially notable given comments made by team officials. The fiancée of Cowboys cornerback Orlando Scandrick said the team has been advised not to kneel during the anthem, although Ian Rapoport of NFL Network said that’s an exaggeration.

But even if players weren’t explicitly told to stand, public statements made by team officials have certainly implied its discouraged for Cowboys players.

Many team owners and coaches have released statements in response to Trump’s comments, but the typically outspoken Jones has not been one. Both he and Garrett have previously spoken highly about the national anthem and American flag, and said players should be respectful of it.

Player protests in the NFL — a movement started by Colin Kaepernick in August 2016 — are not in opposition of the flag or the anthem. Players kneeling or sitting are protesting police brutality and the unequal treatment of people of color in the United States.

NFL's message of ‘unity’ has diluted Colin Kaepernick's reasons for protest