The National Football League and Jay-Z are joining forces to tackle entertainment and social justice within the league.
The new partnership allows the rap mogul’s Roc Nation to co-produce the Super Bowl halftime show and select performers for the NFL’s televised promotional spots, according to the Washington Post’s Mark Maske. The partnership also will tackle community activism, with proceeds from the aforementioned performances going to a grant recipient under the league’s “Inspire Change” program.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is pleased with how discussions around the initiative have gone so far.
“It very quickly went beyond the Super Bowl in our early conversations,” Goodell said, per Maske. “We have an opportunity to make an impact well beyond just the Super Bowl. It could be every other event. It could be every week of our regular season. It could be in ‘Inspire Change’ and how we use platforms to drive positive change in our communities.”
The move comes as the NFL continues to grapple with the residual effects of its now-settled feud with former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. That said, Jay-Z (whose given name is Shawn Carter) isn’t shying away from the opportunity to create more change.
“I think that when you’re discussing these sort of issues, everything is going to be tough,” Carter said, per Maske. “You can either go home, you can pack your bag and sit in the house, or you can choose to take it head-on. And that’s pretty much how we operate at Roc Nation. We seek to identify things that we want to be a part of and things that we believe that we can add value to, and we step in and we come with these ideas. And to their credit, the NFL agreed to these ideas.
“All these ideas come from this building except for ‘Inspire Change,’ which existed but we built it out,” he added. “So we know it’ll be difficult. But we think at the end of the day, a lot of people will benefit from the NFL’s platform and the things that we brought to the table. We think it could help a lot of people.”
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