During Friday’s “First Take” on ESPN, co-host Stephen A. Smith weighed in on a potential Colin Kaepernick return to the NFL.
Smith argued that the former San Francisco 49er’s focus has changed from kneeling during the National Anthem to protest police brutality to being “hell-bent” on not letting the NFL keep protesters out of the league, adding that Kaepernick is more preoccupied with that than being a quarterback.
“In the case of Colin Kaepernick, you have made over $40 million in your career in the National Football League,” Smith said. “The original target of your protest had nothing to do with the NFL. You were talking about our society and you used the NFL as a platform because you were on the field in uniform when you elected to take a knee during the National Anthem. His message was hijacked by the president of the United States — we all know that, we get that, and that part was definitely wrong. The owners are dealing with the residual impact of the president successfully hijacking that message.”
He continued, “Colin Kaepernick seems hell-bent on not letting them do it which means his target has changed from addressing society to now addressing the National Football League and the National Football League, in my opinion, is going to push back, which is why he’s not going to get back in.”
“I think that he loves the fact that he has been martyred and he’s more preoccupied than that than being an NFL quarterback. I’m not saying he doesn’t want to be an NFL quarterback, I’m saying that doesn’t appear to be his priority more than being martyred for the position that he’s taken. He’s enjoying this,” Smith later stated.
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