Nike unveils Colin Kaepernick-led 'Just Do It' campaign for 30th anniversary

The former NFL quarterback, who is suing NFL owners for colluding to keep him out of the league, is one of the faces of a new Nike campaign meant to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the brand's iconic "Just Do It" motto.

Kaepernick was a quarterback with the San Francisco 49ers for six years.

Kaepernick, who triggered a political firestorm after kneeling during the anthem in 2016 to protest racial injustice, has not played in the National Football League since early 2017.

He continued his demonstration by kneeling during the anthem before subsequent contests, sparking a nationwide movement of athletes protesting in solidarity - which in turn drew the ire of President Donald Trump and a highly publicized counterprotest by Vice President Mike Pence. The ad is simply a portrait of Kaepernick with the message "Believe in something".

The advert 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.

President Donald Trump has called players who "disrespect" the United States flag "sons of bitches" and called for them to be sacked.

Talks between Nike and Kaepernick's camp started a few months ago, and the sides negotiated a new, multi-year pact, according to a person familiar with the agreement.

The protests continue into the 2018 season, with some players raising their fists in the air while the anthem plays.

Kaepernick recently won the summary judgment phase of his collusion case against the National Football League, which indicated arbitrator Stephen Burbank felt there was enough merit in the arguments and evidence produced by Kaepernick's lawyers to warrant a trial in the case.

The Swoosh announced Sunday that Kaepernick will be the face of its 30th anniversary "Just Do It" campaign, and Kaepernick tweeted out the ad, which is quite powerful.

  • Stacy Allen