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Tipsheet

Colin Kaepernick Likens NFL Draft, Training Camp to Slavery

AP Photo/Todd Kirkland, File

Former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick compared the NFL Draft process and training camp to slavery in his new Netflix special. 

"Colin in Black & White" provides a glimpse into Kaepernick's life, from high school to the events that he attributes to him becoming involved in social advocacy. One viral clip showed him comparing NFL coaches and front offices to slave owners.

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"What they don’t want you to understand is what’s being established is a power dynamic," Kaepernick says while walking through a practice field. "Before they put you on the field, teams poke, prod, and examine you searching for any defect that might affect your performance."

"No boundary respect," Kaepernick continued. "No dignity left intact."

A line of black actors portraying NFL prospects then walk by Kaepernick before morphing into shackled slaves at an auction waiting for white slave owners to bid on them. 

The slaves are then whipped by the owners as Kaepernick makes an effort to compare the abuse slaves suffered in the United States to the NFL Draft combine process that helps determine if and when players get drafted into the league.

Kaepernick, who made more than $40 million dollars throughout his NFL career, drew national attention in 2016 for sitting and kneeling during the pregame national anthem in an attempt to protest police brutality against black people in the United States. The following year, he opted out of his contract to become a free agent and was never again a member of an NFL team.

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He later claimed that teams refused to sign him because he was being blacklisted by NFL owners who opposed his protests. He filed a lawsuit against the NFL and received an undisclosed settlement. 

The former quarterback has received endorsements from major companies like Nike since his playing days came to a close, reportedly netting him tens of millions of dollars.

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