But legal experts differ on whether pro teams who play in publicly-funded stadiums or who accepted government money in exchange for patriotic displays like the national anthem could find themselves legally exposed if they punish kneeling players.
Wade Rathke, chief organizer of Local 100, said that Jones' threat violates the National Labor Relations Act of 1935, which allows employees "to engage in protected concerted activities for the goal of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection". Trump tweeted. Trump has faced strident criticism since he told a rally in Alabama on September 22 that any National Football League player who knelt for the anthem should be "fired". The union says employers are banned from threatening workers for "concerted" activity.
"The point is he threatened anybody and everybody", Rathke told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. "Mr. Jones just got carried away being a rich guy and there's no laws he has to respect".
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones came out strong against the protests for black lives when he announced that any Cowboys player who kneels during the national anthem will be benched.
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In addition, most agree that kneeling during the anthem doesn't meet Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act, which addresses organized activities related to terms and conditions about employment, wages and working conditions.
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began kneeling during the national anthem before games last year, a move that many NFL teams and players emulated this year to protest racial injustice and police brutality. They are still being paid, and I don't think they necessarily have the right to play in games. You can't bully workers on the job. Jones might be confused.
Jones said on Sunday: "There is no room here if it comes between looking non-supportive of our players and of each other or creating the impression that you're disrespecting the flag, we will be non-supportive of each other". "Now that the president has gotten involved in it and you've seen owners responding by at least stating they will take disciplinary action, it makes it closer to being related to terms and conditions of their employment".
"The remedy for this stuff is to cease and desist", Green said.
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