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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – NFL owners approved a new policy regarding players protesting during the national anthem, which has received a mixed reaction.

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The new policy will require all players and personnel that are on the field during the anthem to stand while the anthem is played. However, the NFL also removed the requirement from the Game Operations Manual that required players to be on the field for the anthem.

“I think that we’ve listened to a lot of different viewpoints including our fans over the last year and I think this policy attempts to come out at a place where we respected everybody’s point of view in this as best we could,” Steelers President  Art Rooney II said.

However, the NFLPA is pushing back against the passage of the policy. They claim it contradicts previous statements by Commissioner Roger Goodell made to the NFLPA leadership.

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Here is the NFLPA’s full statement:

The NFL chose to not consult the union in the development of this new “policy.” NFL players have shown their patriotism through their social activism, their community service, in support of our military and law enforcement and yes, through their protests to raise awareness about the issues they care about.

The vote by NFL club CEOs today contradicts the statements made to our player leadership by Commissioner Roger Goodell and the Chairman of the NFL’s Management Council John Mara about the principles, values and patriotism of our League.

Our union will review the new “policy” and challenge any aspect of it that is inconsistent with the collective bargaining agreement.

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