DALLAS (CBS11) – Dallas Cowboys Head Coach Jason Garrett praised his team for how they handled a pregame tradition:

Before kickoff Monday night, the entire Cowboys organization, including owner and General Manager Jerry Jones, knelt before the national anthem, then stood during the anthem.

(Credit: Dallas Cowboys)

During an afternoon news conference, Garrett said the team wanted to send a message the team respects the American flag and the importance of unity and equality.

“We could not ignore the environment we were in. We addressed that head on, had thoughtful conversations and came up with a plan that everyone felt good about. I think our team did a good job of that,” said Garrett.

At a campaign rally Friday night, President Trump rekindled the debate over some NFL players taking a knee during the anthem.

On Tuesday morning, the President mentioned the Cowboys during two tweets.

He said, “The booing at the NFL football game last night when the entire Dallas team dropped to its knees was loudest I ever heard. Great anger.”

He continued in another tweet, “But while Dallas dropped to its knees as a team, they all stood up for our National Anthem. Big progress being made – we all love our country.”

During a news conference at the White House Tuesday afternoon, President Trump leaned on the NFL. “I think it’s very important for the NFL not to allow people to kneel during the playing of our national anthem and to respect our country and respect our flag.”

The NFL did not respond to our email seeking comment about the President’s comments.

The President was asked if he has been preoccupied with the NFL, while dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in when Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, North Korea, and tax reform. “I wasn’t pre-occupied with the NFL. I was ashamed of what was taking place because to me, that was a very important moment. I don’t think you can disrespect our country, our flag, our national anthem.”

After Monday night’s game, Jerry Jones made it clear where his team stood.

“I’m very proud of the fact that the Dallas Cowboys and our players have always stood, always, stood for the flag,” said Jones.

He says the team wanted to show respect for the flag while sending another important message: “We all agreed that our players wanted to make a statement about unity and we wanted to make a statement about equality. It was real easy for everyone to see that the message of unity, the message for equality was getting pushed aside or diminished by the controversy. What I’m so proud of these guys for is they did both.”