Green Bay Packers superstar quarterback Aaron Rodgers said fellow quarterback Colin Kaepernick should be on an NFL roster heading into the 2017 regular season and that anyone who believes that Kaepernick is still unemployed because of his abilities and not his protest would be “ignorant,” ESPN magazine noted Wednesday.
On Wednesday, Mina Kimes of ESPN The Magazine passed along comments Rodgers made about the hot-button topic.
“I’m gonna stand because that’s the way I feel about the flag—but I’m also 100 percent supportive of my teammates or any fellow players who are choosing not to,” Rodgers told Kimes. “They have a battle for racial equality. That’s what they’re trying to get a conversation started around.
“I think the best way I can say this is: I don’t understand what it’s like to be in that situation,” Rodgers added. “What it is to be pulled over, or profiled, or any number of issues that have happened, that Colin was referencing — or any of my teammates have talked to me about.”
Rodgers added that he was trying to deepen his understanding of racial equality and said that the country needs to “remedy and improve” racial relations. “But I know it’s a real thing my black teammates have to deal with,” he said.
Kaepernick’s protest began last season after several killings of unarmed African-American men, women and children.
“I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color,” Kaepernick told NFL Media in an exclusive interview after the game when first asked about his protest. “To me, this is bigger than football and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.”