April 15 (UPI) -- Dak Prescott said he was frustrated after a photo surfaced showing the Dallas Cowboys quarterback hosting a gathering at his home, despite a stay at home order being in place in Texas due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Various contradicting reports surfaced after the photo of the gathering was posted online. A source told TMZ that more than 30 people attended a "party" Friday at the Prosper, Texas, home but Prescott said there were less than 10 people at his house for a "home dinner."
Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott also attended the gathering. A photo of the gathering showed guests in close proximity while putting food on their plates at a serving table.
"I understand and accept that there are additional responsibilities and media scrutiny that come with being an NFL quarterback, but it is very frustrating and disappointing when people provide completely inaccurate information from anonymous sources, especially now," Prescott said in a statement. "To set the record straight -- I know that we all need to do our best to socially distance and like everyone else, I am continuing to adjust to what that requires, but the truth is that I was with fewer than 10 people for a home dinner -- not a party -- on Friday night.
"I am very sensitive to the challenges we are all facing and making sure to support the first responders and medical personnel and everyone else putting in long hours. We are all at a time when we need to keep educating ourselves about the importance of health and isolation during this pandemic and I will continue to make sure to do my part by following the guidelines until we are approved to start returning to normal activities."
The Prosper Police Department responded to the house but an officer was unable to verify if there were more than 10 people at the gathering. Sources told ESPN and the Fort Worth Star-Telegram that there were not more than 10 people at the house.
"The officer was unable to verify the report of a 'party.' Therefore, he just reminded the resident of the current CDC guidelines -- to include social distancing," the police said in a statement.
"We've certainly communicated with Dak and Zeke," Jones said. "I think they're certainly aware now of how sensitive these situations are."
"I don't think you'll be seeing that anymore. They're certainly guys we have the utmost respect for, and I certainly know they understand the sensitivity of the situation we're in today. It's certainly very serious and something that we know and certainly know they understand."
Prescott and Elliott were also criticised earlier in April for working out together alongside former teammate Dez Bryant. Bryant posted videos and photos from the workouts on social media. The former Cowboys wide receiver said criticism for the workouts "messed [him] up mentally."
The NFL has barred players and team staff from NFL facilities due to the coronavirus pandemic. The league has also said it expects players to respect social-distancing guidelines. The Cowboys are planning to begin a voluntary virtual off-season program Monday, but Prescott could potentially sit out for the meetings as he tries to negotiate for a long term contract with the NFC East franchise. He is currently set to play the 2020 season under the franchise tag with a salary of around $33 million.
"For every player, it's voluntary in terms of their participation in the virtual meetings -- but I'm not aware and haven't been made aware to what degree Dak's participation would be," Jones said.