Roger Goodell and the NFL have made a full 180 from where they were four years ago.
Roger Goodell released a statement last week in which he noted that the NFL was wrong to disagree with players who kneeled during the National Anthem. Throughout the message, he stated that he was ready to protest with the players and now, he is putting his money where his mouth is. Today, the NFL pledged $250 million over the next 10 years in an effort to combat and stop systemic racism.
According to Judy Batista of NFL.com, the league is actually planning on teaming up with players to create a program for criminal justice reform, as well as financial education. In fact, one anonymous source around the league says the NFL is willing to partner up with the likes of Colin Kaepernick.
“We wouldn’t be where we are today without the work Colin and other players have led off,” the person said. “That is a key point here. We listened to our players. We needed to listen more, we needed to move faster. We heard them and launched a social justice platform because of what Colin was protesting about. The players have always been an essential piece of this effort and this campaign. It would be awesome to engage Colin on some of the work we are doing. He’s doing real impactful work. Getting him in some way would be amazing for us. There’s a lot of work to do to get to that point. We’re certainly open and willing to do that.”
This is a huge announcement from the league and if they follow through, progress will surely be made. As for Kaepernick, you would think a partnership with the NFL would mean he gets signed by a team. If not, we're not exactly sure he would be reciprocating that interest.