Miami Dolphins coach Adam Gase has taken a stance on players protesting during the national anthem.
Prior to Sunday’s win over the Tennessee Titans, Gase implemented a team-wide policy for players to either stand or stay in the tunnel or locker room during the playing of the anthem, according to ABC News.
Wide receiver Kenny Stills, tight end Julius Thomas and safety Michael Thomas were among the players who decided to stay inside Sunday until after the anthem concluded.
“It’s not about what I think about or anything like that,” Stills told reporters on Sunday. “It’s about the work that we are doing and it’s never been about the protest or the flag or any of that. So I just continue to focus on the work that we are doing in the community and we’ve got some plans and things in the work with the NFL and so that’s what we’re working on.”
All three players had previously knelt on the sideline during last week’s loss to the New Orleans Saints in London.
“It comes from me,” Gase said Monday. “I thought it was time for us to address it. … I’ve had a lot of conversations with a lot of people. It doesn’t matter what I think. This is what we’re doing.”
Gase said he implemented the policy after speaking with several players. Along with the three players mentioned, the Dolphins have had numerous others kneel during the anthem this season including running back Jay Ajayi, defensive tackle Jordan Phillips and left tackle Laremy Tunsil.
Gase’s decision comes one day after Dallas Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said that any Cowboys player that decides to “disrespect” the flag won’t be allowed to play in a game.
“If there is anything disrespecting the flag, then we will not play. Period,” said Jones. “We’re going to respect the flag and I’m going to create the perception of it. …I know this. We cannot in the NFL, in any way, give the implication that we tolerate disrespecting the flag.
“We cannot do that. I know [Vice President Mike Pence] did leave because in his opinion, the teams were. We know that there is a serious debate in this country about those issues. But there is no question in my mind that the National Football League and the Dallas Cowboys are going to stand up for the flag.
“Just so we’re clear.”