Colin Kaepernick: Nike suffer #justburnit backlash over advertising campaign

Nike Stock Plunges After Tapping Kaepernick as Ad Campaign Poster Boy

The NFL released a statement on Tuesday after Nike, one of its major sponsors, named free-agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick as the face of its 30th anniversary "Just Do It" campaign.

Kaepernick is entering his second NFL season without being on a roster, after he began kneeling in protest of racial injustice during the national anthem in August of 2016.

Kaepernick triggered a political firestorm for kneeling during the USA national anthemin 2016 to protest racial injustice. The protests have grown into one of the most polarizing issues in sports and prompted a reaction from President Trump, who urged the league to suspend or fire players who demonstrate during the anthem.

Nike also recently signed an eight-year deal to create the uniforms for all 32 teams within the National Football League that is reportedly worth $1 billion.

Kaepernick contends the owners violated their collective bargaining agreement with players by conspiring to keep him off teams.

"Gino Fisanotti, Nike's vice president of brand for North America, described Kaepernick as "one of the most inspirational athletes of this generation", telling ESPN: "(He) has leveraged the power of sport to help move the world forward".

John Rich of country music duo Big & Rich slammed Nike for making embattled former quarterback Colin Kaepernick as the face of its "Just Do It" campaign. SUBSCRIBE NOW and hit the bell to be the first in the know.

The person said Nike will feature Kaepernick on several platforms, including billboards, television commercials and online ads.

Those who have been offended by Kaepernick being signed to the ad deal have expressed their displeasure, although some have been met with hilarious consequences - with many pointing out that previous customers of Nike were simply destroying their own sneakers, cleats and socks.

Some Kaepernick critics took that to mean sacrificing their Nike products.

"Nike has been a long-time and trusted partner of National Football League and we're thrilled to extend our relationship with them", the NFL's chief media and business officer Brian Rolapp said at the time.

When asked by a fan why Rich can't "disagree but still respect the same rights of others", Rich said that the discussion ended for him when Kaepernick compared "police to PIGS".

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