This past Sunday was a day in which the NFL would soon like to forget, but the events that occurred may be inescapable.
The ramifications from what took place on Sunday will linger for months, as everything that’s wrong with the league was on display for the world to see.
And as usual, it all started, and ended, with Colin Kaepernick.
Social media caught fire early on in the day when CBS reporter Jason La Canfora went on “The NFL Today” and lied about Kaepernick’s future possible intentions.
“He’s not planning on kneeling. He’s going to donate all his jersey sales, and he’s planning on standing for the anthem if given the opportunity,” he said.
However, no one actually knows what Kaepernick would do, except Kaepernick. Because La Canfora never asked the former 49ers quarterback, he just assumed.
“I can’t say if they are true or not,” La Canfora tweeted. “Colin and I didn’t discuss.”
“Colin would have to address any future demonstrations,” he said in another tweet. “I didn’t ask him if he would sit or stand. Our chat primarily about his will to play.”
Instead of Twitter timelines being filled with reactions to what was actually happening on the field, most of the conversation was focused on La Canfora’s lie, and the outrage it caused.
However, this wouldn’t be a story, or a distraction, if NFL owners would stop blackballing Kaepernick. According to Yahoo Sports, since Kaepernick’s agent informed every team in the league that he was opting out of his contract with the 49ers on March 1, 64 quarterbacks have been acquired by teams across the league.
None of the quarterbacks have ever been one of the faces of the league or started in a Super Bowl — two things that Kaepernick accomplished within the last four years.
But if that wasn’t enough, Vice President Mike Pence and Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones did things to help Kaepernick’s cause without even knowing it.
After posting the same picture to Twitter of himself at an Indianapolis Colts game that he used three years ago, Pence participated in one of the biggest publicity stunts of the year.
According to the Vice President, the former Indiana governor left the game between the Colts and the 49ers, Kaepernick’s old team that’s had the most players to date kneel during the anthem, because “[at]POTUS and I will not dignify any event that disrespects our soldiers, our Flag, or our National Anthem.”
Mind you, Pence was doubling back from the West Coast, and according to reports, the pool of reporters that were with him didn’t come inside Lucas Oil Stadium because they were told that the “vice president might be leaving the game early.”
“Manipulation of faux patriotism took new turn today with VP Pence. Preplanned early exit from Colts game after 49ers kneeled, then tweets,” Norman Ornstein, a resident scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, commented on Twitter.
Apparently, Mike Pence is bothered by systemic racism and police brutality. The irony of this is that the Vice President of the United States staged a fake protest of an actual protest.
So, for everyone who feels like sports and politics shouldn’t mix, or that a football game isn’t the right place to flaunt politics, take it up with Pence.
Last November, Pence was addressed by the cast of “Hamilton” upon entering office about fears that this new administration wouldn’t protect minorities like themselves, and said he wasn’t offended by what the cast said to him, or by the boos he received when he walked into the theatre.
White privilege sure loves to cherry-pick which protests they deem acceptable.
But wait, there’s more.
Jerry Jones, the same NFL owner that has signed domestic abusers and has had players charged with intoxication manslaughter on his roster, has reportedly threatened to bench any player on this team that kneels for the national anthem.
President Trump reportedly blew Jones’ phone up last week asking him not to let players take a knee for the anthem.
“If there is anything disrespecting the flag, then we will not play. Period,” Jones said. “We’re going to respect the flag and I’m going to create the perception of it.”
A line has been drawn in the sand in Dallas. But it’s not as risque as one might think. To date, there hasn’t been a single Dallas Cowboy to kneel during the national anthem.
By making the statement, Jones comes off as looking like a tough guy, when in actuality he’s portraying the mindset of a slave master.
Why say it if no one has kneeled?
Now, black and brown members of the Cowboys have to make a decision: Challenge the rules, or be labeled a sellout or Uncle Tom.
A team whose biggest stars are all black (Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott, and Dez Bryant) now have to spend all week defending their blackness, on top of answering questions about their underwhelming 2-3 start to the season.
Apparently, Trump, Pence and Jones don’t follow the news, as white supremacists showed up in Charlottesville, Va., once again this past weekend, proving yet again why players are kneeling.
But that’s not all, it gets worse.
Player injuries also took center stage on Sunday as the Giants lost their best player in Odell Beckham Jr. when he broke his ankle. It was a precursor to what would lead to an injury-filled prime time game of the week, as the Houston Texans and the Kansas City Chiefs faced off on Sunday Night Football.
Chiefs safety Steven Terrell went down on the very first play of the game with a gruesome head injury on the opening kickoff. Kansas City wide receiver Chris Conley was carted off the field late in the game with an Achilles injury.
The Texans lost linebacker Whitney Mercilus when he suffered a chest injury, while the biggest blow of the night occurred when Houston defensive end J.J. Watt went down on the first drive after suffering a tibial plateau fracture.
And to end the night, we saw a video of Chris Foerster doing his best impression of “Richie” from the 1989 film “Harlem Nights,” as he risked it all for his “Sunshine.”
Before resigning on Monday morning, Foerster was the Miami Dolphins offensive line coach. But, after a self-employed and self-described “professional tease” named Kijuana Nige posted a video of him snorting lines of cocaine professing his love for her, he is without a job, as the league has yet another scandal on its hands.
It’s a public reactions nightmare in the NFL offices, and it will be interesting to see how the league handles all the things that were thrown at it on Sunday.
Apparently, Nige posted the video in response to how minority players have been treated around national anthem protests.
“The white people mad at me like I forced blow down this mans nose and like I recorded it on that low,” Nige wrote in the post. “No those are his habits and he recorded himself and sent it to me professing his love. So quick to make excuses for him but will roast a minority player over an anthem, dog fights, weed, domestic issues etc. But y’all keep saying ALL LIVES MATTER STFU?”
Karma is truly undefeated.