Colin Kaepernick still isn’t on an NFL roster with the start of the regular season just over a week away, and one of the league’s elite quarterbacks believes he should be.
ESPN The Magazine’s Mina Kimes published a profile on Aaron Rodgers on Wednesday, and she asked the Green Bay Packers star his thoughts on Kaepernick and his silent protest during the Star-Spangled Banner last season. And Rodgers believes it’s “ignorant” to think the 29-year-old is unemployed solely for football reasons.
“I think he should be on a roster right now,” Rodgers said. “I think because of his protests, he’s not.”
Rodgers told Kimes he’s already had conversations with tight end and new teammate Martellus Bennett — who raised his fist for the anthem last season and whose brother, Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett, is sitting in protest this season — about what black players are fighting for. And even though Rodgers doesn’t plan to sit, he said he views the protests as “peaceful” and “respectful.”
“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 said. “They have a battle for racial equality. That’s what they’re trying to get a conversation started around.”
Rodgers recognizes that he’ll never fully understand what it’s like to be black in the United States. But the 33-year-old quarterback acknowledged that his teammates are standing up against something legitimate.
“I think the best way I can say this is: I don’t understand what it’s like to be in that situation,” Rodgers told Kimes. “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. But I know it’s a real thing my black teammates have to deal with.”
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