Colin Kaepernick has been making a lot of noise recently after launching a protest. While some NFL players and popular athletes praised his intention, some also thinks the San Francisco 49ers quarterback is just trying to get attention in the league.
Kaepernick recently made headlines after launching a national-anthem protest. In a preseason game, the quarterback did not stand up for the national anthem. In the following game, he just took a knee, continuing his protest against racial inequality and police violence.
Kaepernick’s action drew praises from his co-players in the NFL, as well as well-known athletes like Golden State Warriors superstars Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant. However, ESPN analyst Trent Dilfer recently blasted Kaepernick, saying that the 28-year-old is just trying to get the spotlight in a wrong way.
“The big thing that hit me through all this was this is a backup quarterback whose job is to be quiet,” Dilfer said via San Jose Mercury News. “And sit in the shadows and get the starter ready to play Week 1.”
Kaepernick is not expected to start unless Blaine Gabbert struggles mightily in the first few weeks of the season. Dilfer said that Kaepernick’s role is to help Gabbert prepare for the upcoming season. But instead of helping their main quarterback and the entire team, the ESPN analyst insisted that Kaepernick is hurting the 49ers.
“He chose a time where all of a sudden he became the center of attention,” Dilfer continued. “And it has disrupted that organization. It has caused friction. And it’s torn at the fabric of the team.”
On the other hand, 49ers safety Eric Reid and wide receiver Torrey Smith came into Kaepernick’s defense. Both players said that Kaepernick’s protest actually made them more cohesive as a unit. It is also worth noting that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said in a recent interview that he has nothing against Kaepernick’s protest.
“Our players have strong views about things,” Goodell told Today. “So I support our players speaking out against that. But that’s what the focus should be on, the changes he wants to see in our society.”
The San Francisco 49ers will open their campaign this season on Monday night. They will be going up against the Los Angeles Rams at Levi’s Stadium.