NEW YORK -- NFL owners gathered in New York City with the intention of going over the league's guidelines for the national anthem and to discuss what the league can do to bring about social change with players pushing for change.
However, the national anthem reportedly never came up and no major changes came out of the meetings on Tuesday other than a joint statement from the NFL and NFLPA stating that the discussion was "positive."
About 11 teams were represented at the meetings, including the Atlanta Falcons by team owner Arthur Blank. Representatives from the NFL and NFLPA were there, as well as 13 players from different teams.
"Today owners and players had a productive meeting focused on how we can work together to promote positive social change and address inequality in our communities. NFL executives and owners joined NFLPA executives and player leaders to review and discuss plans to utilize our platform to promote equality and effectuate positive change. We agreed that these are common issues and pledged to meet again to continue this work together," the NFL and NFLPA said in a statement.
"As we said last week, everyone who is part of our NFL community has a tremendous respect for our country, our flag, our anthem and our military. In the best American tradition, we are coming together to find common ground and commit to the hard work required for positive change."
Philadelphia safety Malcolm Jennings, who was one of the players to attend the meeting, told 11Alive news partner USA Today Sports that the meetings made him believe the league was headed towards progress.
Jennings said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell unveiled a plan for the league to handle social issues in the future, but he did not provide specifics. Goodell is scheduled to address the media later Tuesday.
"I wouldn't say we're closer to a resolution, but the conversation is ongoing," Jenkins said, adding that the the talk was collaborative rather than combative.
Reports are that the national anthem protests did not dominate the conversation, and owners did not express a desire for the protests to end.
Last week, the league sent a letter to its 32 teams that stated it believes players should stand for the national anthem and that it is time to move past "this controversy."
The letter, obtained by USA TODAY Sports, was sent to chief executives and presidents of teams from commissioner Goodell.
"The current dispute over the National Anthem is threatening to erode the unifying power of our game, and is now dividing us, and our players, from many fans across the country," the letter stated.
Last week, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said that any player that "disrespects the flag" will not play. Jones and Blank talked for a few moments outside of the meetings. However, neither were available for an interview.
There were a handful of protesters outside the NFL headquarters, shouting, "Take a knee against white supremacy." Two were able to get by security and get in front of Jerry Jones outside, according to multiple reports.
Former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick was the first player to sit and kneel during the national anthem to protest social injustice. Kaepernick was invited by the players to attend the meeting, but he did not. Kapernick's lawyer released the following statement, according to ESPN:
"Colin Kaepernick was not invited to attend today's meeting by any official from the NFL or any team executives," he said. "Other players wanted him present and have asked that he attend the next meeting with the goal of forging a lasting and faithful consensus around these issues. Mr. Kaepernick is open to future participation on these important discussions."
On Sunday, Kaepernick filed a grievance against NFL owners for collusion.
USA Today Sports contributed to this report.