Trent Dilfer told Colin Kaepernick to keep quiet and carry a clipboard. Colin Kaepernick responds that “being quiet” is not “more important than peoples’ lives.”
Kaepernick took a knee for the national anthem on ESPN Monday night at Levi’s Stadium. At the Worldwide Leader in Sports over the weekend, Dilfer, who carried a clipboard for the San Francisco 49ers late in his career, criticized the backup quarterback for disrupting the team dynamic.
“No matter how passionate you are, no matter how much of a burden you have for a social issue, you don’t let it get in the way of the team,” Dilfer noted. “And the big thing that hit me through all of this was this is a backup quarterback whose job is to be quiet and sit in the shadows and get the starter ready to play Week One. Yet, he chose a time when he became the center of attention. And it has disrupted that organization. It has caused friction and torn the fabric of the team.”
After the 28-0 San Francisco win over the Los Angeles Rams, a game which saw 49ers fans boo Kaepernick when he played for two or so minutes of garbage time, the current backup QB took aim at the retired Super Bowl-winning quarterback.
“I think that’s one of the most ridiculous comments I’ve heard,” Kaepernick told the San Jose Mercury News. “The fact that you say, ‘You’re a backup quarterback, stay in your place,’ that’s an issue. To me, you’re telling me that my position as a backup quarterback and being quiet is more important than peoples’ lives. I would ask him to really have a conversation with the families of people that have been murdered and see if he still feels that way. Because I’d bet you he doesn’t. Just because he hasn’t experienced that type of oppression.”
Kaepernick said he expected criticism when he embarked on his strike of rising for the anthem.
“Nothing’s ever been done without criticism,” he pointed out. “Every great change, every great—whether it’s revolution or evolution of things—there’s always criticism of it.”