Nike's Kaepernick campaign puts National Football League apparel deal in spotlight

Nike Taps Colin Kaepernick for New ‘Just Do It’ Ad

Last night Nike unveiled a polarizing new ad as part of its 30th anniversary "Just Do It" campaign, which features free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick along with the caption, "Believe in something".

Some consumers have vocalized their disproval of Nike's decision and Kaepernick's protests of police brutality and inequality during the national anthem.

Sportswear brand Nike has risked incurring the Twitter wrath of USA president Donald Trump after it selected Colin Kaepernick as one of 30 faces to mark its 30th anniversary celebration of the "Just Do It" tagline from Wieden + Kennedy.

Trump described players like Colin Kaepernick who knelt for the anthem as "sons of bitches" who should be fired. "These are very rich and influential people who can actually make a change in this country and bring about some real reforms".

The ad's release comes just days after Kaepernick was cheered by spectators when he appeared alongside fellow player and activist Eric Reid at the US Open tennis tournament to watch Serena Williams on Friday. And Kaepernick, who parted with the San Francisco 49ers in the spring of 2017, has been unable to find work in the National Football League since, a situation that has led him to file a grievance alleging collusion among owners to keep him out. More than 1.3 million tweets referenced Nike, and it was the number one trend on Twitter for more than seven hours on Labor Day.

The Washington Post reported that Nike, whose apparel contract with the NFL runs through 2028, didn't give the league advance notice of Kaepernick's involvement in the campaign. It overtly supports Kaepernick's political activism, which involved kneeling during the national anthem, a move that has angered President Trump and his supporters.

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In addition, the sound technician for country music duo Big and Rich, cut the iconic Nike swoosh off of his socks in protest.

Def Jam rapper 2 Chainz is 100 percent here for Colin Kaepernick leveling up with Nike.

Nike's Facebook page has been flooded with criticism of the ad.

Following Nike's decision, people are now burning their branded trainers and clothing in a demonstration of their own.

The Nike slogan, "Just do it", is written underneath. They made [Michael] Jordan the face of the company at a time when black men were considered to be a huge risk as pitch men.

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