Nike features NFL's Kaepernick among athletes in 'Just Do It' campaign

Justin GreeneSep 04, 2018

He stirred national debate by taking a knee while the anthem was played before games during the 2016 season, to draw attention to police killings of African Americans and other issues.

Top Nike athletes, including LeBron James and Serena Williams, have publicly backed Kaepernick and his right to protest.

ESPN reported that Nike signed Kaepernick to an endorsement deal in 2011, and has maintained that contract since then.

Other players followed his lead, as several began to protest previous year and helped create a number of programs.

"Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything".

A stunning and simple image of former San Francisco 49er Colin Kaepernick emerged on Labor Day - his solemn face starting in a black-and-white Nike ad with these poignant words: "Believe in something".

The protests continue into the 2018 season, with some players raising their fists in the air while the anthem plays.

The new Nike adverts, unveiled just days before the start of the 2018 National Football League season, show a portrait of Kaepernick with the slogan: "Believe in something".

Mr Trump described players like Kaepernick who knelt for the anthem as "sons of b******" who should be fired.

Nike's campaign also includes ads featuring Serena Williams, Odell Beckham Jr. and Seattle Seahawks rookie linebacker Shaquem Griffin, who has made an inspirational run to the league despite missing one hand due to complications from amniotic band syndrome as a child. The quarterback is alleging that NFL owners conspired to keep him out of the league because of his protests against social injustice. Both have filed collusion grievances against National Football League owners. An arbitrator ruled last week that Kaepernick's case will go to trial.

The Nike slogan, "Just do it", is written underneath. Chief Executive Officer Mark Parker apologized for the company's work culture in May to employees in a company-wide meeting.

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