Cowboys' Dak Prescott says his comments about anthem and protests were misunderstood

After his team owner and the owner’s son made very strong statements about what players on their roster will do during the playing of the national anthem (things they apparently won’t do themselves), Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott proclaimed that he’d never kneel during the playing anthem.

On Tuesday, Prescott stood by his words, but maintained that his full beliefs weren’t taken into account.

‘There was a little misunderstanding’

Speaking with Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Prescott said he’s aware of what’s been said of him on social media, where he’s been criticized by fans, media and even other NFL players for being a sellout.

“I am not oblivious to it. You get on social media you see It. It doesn’t bother me,” Prescott said. “I said what I said. You have an opinion. Everyone else has an opinion. They are entitled to it as well. I accepted what they said and respect it. They should respect mine."

Prescott has said that the anthem is a time of reflection for him, and even though he opposes protesting during the anthem, he’s not unaware of issues of police brutality and racial and social injustice, the very things that sparked the protests in the first place.

“I think there was a little misunderstanding of the fact of what I believe in,” he said. “I never said I didn’t believe in social injustice and things that were going on. I just said I didn’t think that the national anthem was the time. It’s two minutes out of our day that we could also be spending embracing what our country should be and what our country is going to be one day that we know that it’s not right now. That is the sad part about it. That it’s not.

“I respect everybody. And power to the people that kneel. That is what they believe in and they should be able to kneel. For me. the game of football has been such a peace. It’s a moment for me to be at peace and think about all the great things our country does have even though we know it’s not a good for us right now.”

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Dak Prescott through the years
MOBILE, AL - JANUARY 30: South team's quarterback Dak Prescott #15 with Mississippi State on January 30, 2016 at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Alabama. (Photo by Michael Chang/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 25: Quarterback Dak Prescott #14 of Mississippi State speaks to the media during the 2016 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 25, 2016 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 13: Quarterback Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys throws a pass against the Los Angeles Rams at the Los Angeles Coliseum during preseason on August 13, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
25 SEP 2016: Dallas Cowboys Quarterback Dak Prescott (4) [20763] during the NFL game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Chicago Bears at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. (Photo by Andrew Dieb/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 09: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys warming up before a game against the Cincinnati Bengals at AT&T Stadium on October 9, 2016 in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys defeated the Bengals 28-14. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
GREEN BAY, WI - OCTOBER 16: Ezekiel Elliott #21 takes the handoff from Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys during the second quarter at Lambeau Field on October 16, 2016 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
GREEN BAY, WI - OCTOBER 16: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys calls a play at the line of scrimmage during the game against the Green Bay Packers on October 16, 2016 at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Cowboys defeated the Packers 30-16. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 30: Dallas Cowboys Quarterback Dak Prescott (4) warms up prior to overtime with Quarterback Tony Romo (9) looking on during the NFL game between the Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys on October 30, 2016, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. Dallas defeats Philadelphia 29-23 in overtime. (Photo by Andrew Dieb/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 13: Dak Prescott #4 hands the ball off to Ezekiel Elliott #21 of the Dallas Cowboys in the first quarter during the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field on November 13, 2016 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 13: Quarterback Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys looks on from the field after a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field on November 13, 2016 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Cowboys defeated the Steelers 35-30. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 13: Dallas Cowboys Quarterback Dak Prescott (4) after an interview during the NFL Football game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Pittsburgh Steelers on November 13, 2016, at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, PA. The Cowboys defeated the Steelers with a final score of 35-30. (Photo by Mark Alberti/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - NOVEMBER 20: Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) points to the sky after throwing a touchdown during the game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Baltimore Ravens on November 20, 2016 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Dallas defeats Baltimore 27-17. (Photo by Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 18: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys warms up on the field prior to the game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at AT&T Stadium on December 18, 2016 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) leads the huddle against the Tampa Buccaneers on Sunday, Dec. 18, 2016 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. (Richard W. Rodriguez/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS via Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 15: Dak Prescott #4 (L), Ezekiel Elliott #21, and Cole Beasley #11 of the Dallas Cowboys relax before the NFC Divisional Playoff Game against the Green Bay Packers at AT&T Stadium on January 15, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 15: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys celebrates after throwing a touchdown pass during the fourth quarter against the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Divisional Playoff game at AT&T Stadium on January 15, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 12: NFL player Dak Prescott attends The 2017 ESPYS at Microsoft Theater on July 12, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images)
OXNARD, CA - JULY 24: Dak Prescott #4 and head coach Jason Garrett of the Dallas Cowboys share a laugh during the first day of training camp on July 24, 2017 in Oxnard, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - AUGUST 26: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys adjusts his jersey on the field during warmups before a preseason game against the Oakland Raiders at AT&T Stadium on August 26, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - AUGUST 26: Ezekiel Elliott #21 of the Dallas Cowboys takes the handoff from Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys in the first quarter of a preseason game against the Oakland Raiders at AT&T Stadium on August 26, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 17: Quarterback Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys stands on the field during player warm ups before a game against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on September 17, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 01: Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) warms up prior to the NFL game between the Los Angeles Rams and Dallas Cowboys on October 1, 2017 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. (Photo by Andrew Dieb/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
SANTA CLARA, CA - OCTOBER 22: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys takes the field prior to their NFL game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium on October 22, 2017 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
SANTA CLARA, CA - OCTOBER 22: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys celebrates after a touchdown pass to Dez Bryant #88 against the San Francisco 49ers during their NFL game at Levi's Stadium on October 22, 2017 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
SANTA CLARA, CA - OCTOBER 22: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys stands on the sidelines during their game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium on October 22, 2017 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
LANDOVER, MD - OCTOBER 29: Quarterback Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys looks on against the Cowboys win over the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field on October 29, 2017 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) scrambles free from Kansas City Chiefs defensive end Allen Bailey (97) for a touchdown run in the first half on Sunday, Nov. 5, 2017 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. (Brad Loper/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS via Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - NOVEMBER 12: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys warm up prior to the game against the Atlanta Falcons at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on November 12, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - NOVEMBER 30: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys tries to evade tackle on a scramble in the first half of a football game against the Washington Redskins at AT&T Stadium on November 30, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) smiles during pregame warmups before a game against the New York Giants on Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017 at Metlife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. (David Kent/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS via Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - DECEMBER 17: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys celebrates in the final moments of their NFL game against the Oakland Raiders at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on December 17, 2017 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 24: Ezekiel Elliott #21 of the Dallas Cowboys takes the handoff from Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys in the first quarter of a football game against the Seattle Seahawks at AT&T Stadium on December 24, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 24: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys walks off the field after the Seattle Seahawks beat the Dallas Cowboys 21-12 at AT&T Stadium on December 24, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - FEBRUARY 03: NFL Player Dak Prescott attends the NFL Honors at University of Minnesota on February 3, 2018 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) drops back to pass during the morning walk-through at training camp in Oxnard, Calif., on Tuesday, July 31, 2018. (Max Faulkner/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS via Getty Images)
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‘I am for the action’

Prescott reiterated to Hill that he’s in favor of working off the field toward solutions, as Colin Kaepernick, Malcolm Jenkins, Devin McCourty, Kenny Stills and other NFL players are doing.

(If he’s lucky, maybe Stephen Jones will help him, but only on Tuesday. After intimating during a radio interview last week that Dallas would cut players who don’t stand at attention during the anthem, he tossed in, “We certainly are supportive of them when they have their personal issues or their personal things that they want to pursue. And we’ll help them pursue them on Tuesdays.” Because apparently in Jones’ world, everything is hunky-dory for people of color and the poor Wednesday through Monday.)

“I am for the action,” Prescott said. “I am for joining Malcolm and joining those guys in doing something different. That is what I mean my taking that next step rather than just kneeling or standing. I don’t think kneeling or standing is creating a solution for us.”

For the record

For the record, this is what Prescott said last week; what he said on Tuesday is mostly a regurgitation.

“I don’t think that’s the time or the venue to do so,” Prescott said of protesting during the anthem. “The game of football has always brought me such a peace and I think it does the same for a lot of other people, people playing the game, people watching the game and any people that have an impact on the game.

“So when you bring such a controversy to the stadium, to the field, to the game, it takes away. It takes away from the joy and the love that football brings a lot of people.”

He also said, “I do exactly what I’m doing and what I stand by whether I was wearing the star or not, whether I was playing for Jerry Jones, Stephen Jones or any other owner, I believe in what I believe in and that’s that.

“I’m all about making a change and making a difference. I think this whole kneeling and all that was all about just raising awareness. The fact that we’re still talking about social injustice years later I think we’ve got to that point.

“I’m up for taking that next step, whatever that step may be. I’m all for action.”

Prescott has not said what kind of action he’d want to take or has taken. He has numerous examples thanks to other NFL players in other cities if he ever wanted to reach out for suggestions.

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