Jones: Cowboys will respect the flag or they won't play

After the Cowboys' heartbreaking loss to the Green Bay Packers, Dallas team owner Jerry Jones warned his players to "respect the flag" or they will not play.

The national anthem protest theme that boiled over in NFL stadiums two weekends ago then calmed down last weekend, but erupted again on Sunday.

In Indianapolis, United States vice-president Mike Pence and his wife walked out of Lucas Oil Stadium after he spotted players kneeling during the national anthem.

"If there is anything disrespecting the flag, then we will not play. Period," Jones said (via the Dallas News.) "We're going to respect the flag and I'm going to create the perception of it."

Jones referenced Pence's actions in his comments.

"I know this. We cannot in the NFL, in any way, give the implication that we tolerate disrespecting the flag," Jones said. "We cannot do that.

"I know the vice-president 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."

While all the Cowboys players and coaches knelt with Jones before the anthem two weeks ago in a show of unity, the Dallas News reports no players have knelt or sat during the anthem this season.

However, defensive linemen David Irving and Damontre Moore raised their fist following the anthem Sunday. Moore did so as well last week, while Irving was making his season debut.