"We will air this Unity spot in tonight’s game," NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced in a tweet on Sunday afternoon. "It reflects the unifying force of our great game, our players & clubs."
"We think this is the single best response to demonstrate what we are about. It stands in stark contrast to some who practice the politics of division," an NFL spokesperson told CNN.
The one-minute ad, called "Inside These Lines," initially ran during February’s Super Bowl. It will re-air during Sunday evening's game between the Oakland Raiders and Washington Redskins.
The short but powerful ad depicts football players embracing one another while a narrator says, "Inside these lines, we don’t have to come from the same place to help each other reach the same destination."
The decision was sparked by Trump's recent barrage of criticism directed at sports players who exercise their right to protest the National Anthem. At a Friday rally for Alabama Republican Senate candidate Luther Strange, Trump stated that the NFL should fire these athletes.
On Saturday and Sunday, Trump continued his tirade on (where else?) Twitter.
In response to the president's tweets, NFL players chose to kneel during the National Anthem or sit it out altogether. Players on both the Baltimore Ravens and Jacksonville Jaguars kneeled during the anthem at a game in London. Artists Rico Lavelle and Meghan Linsey performed the National Anthem on one knee in Detroit and Nashville, respectively. Raiders and Redskins players also knelt during the anthem.
Goodell previously noted that Trump's comments displayed "an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL."
Although a number of football fans have expressed outrage at the players' protests, the NFL has taken a clear stand in support of its athletes. The NFL "Unity" ad can be viewed below.