August 15, 2019 3 min read


Jay-Z Needs NFL: Rapper Falls Out with Kaepernick

  • Jay-Z signs a partnership with NFL to promote social justice
  • Rapper and Kaepernick fall out over the issue, a source says
  • NFL’s treatment of the athlete legitmized with the help of Jay-Z

Jay-Z has faced criticism over his decision to sign a partnership with the National Football League, withdrawing previous objections to the way the league handled Colin Kaepernick’s protest.

Jay-Z and NFL Signs “Social Justice Partnership”

On Wednesday, August 14, the National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell and rapper Shawn Carter, better known for his stage name as Jay-Z, gave a joint press conference during which announced the signing of a partnership between Roc Nation, Carter’s entertainment company and the League.

The move was immediately criticized at journalists who were present and began asking Shawn why he had agreed to partner with the same league he had previously defied. Journalists were referring to the case of Colin Kaepernick who “took a knee” in 2016 during a San Francisco 49ers game which immediately won him bad reputation.

Kaepernick chose a particularly sensitive moment to stage his protest – when uniformed men were paying homage to soldiers who never returned home. While it initially looked like Kaepernick was dishonoring servicemen and his country, by refusing to stand up for the anthem, the decision was influenced by a veteran and a former NFL player, reports suggested.

The moment was apt as Kaepernick expressed his refusal to sanction police brutality on black lives in the country. Subsequent weeks and months didn’t abet his zeal either, with him issuing new challenges to society – dividing America over a sensitive issue.

Kaepernick, Colin taking a new protest against police brutality and shot black Americans
Colin Kaepernick taking a knee stand to protest police brutality.

He was booed and assault by NFL management as well as politicians, media outlets and ordinary citizens who were quick to condemn his actions.

American veteran – the group that was supposedly offended by the act – issue an immediate public letter in which they supported not only the protest, but how it was carried out. U.S. army veteran Richard Allen had the following to say in 2016:

There are veterans who not only agree with Colin Kaepernick’s right to do that, but also agree with the substance of the action.’

Jay-Z Supported Kaepernick, But He’s Still a Business, Man

While Jay-Z was among the personalities to criticize the NFL, the rapper seems to be all business now. At the time, it made sense to support Kaepernick. Moving forward, however, it must have made more sense for Shawn to take the side of the NFL.

In light of this, it became clear that Jay-Z had tried to talk to Kaepernick but he himself remained reluctant to reveal what way the conversation went. One thing, though, was for certain – it wasn’t a good conversation, one source said.

Anyone who’s vaguely familiar with the situation can understand why. While Jay-Z said that he would seek to heal the fabric of communities that made up the United States, his action legitimate the NFL which acted with hostility towards a player who exercised his right of free speech.

The issue at hand is that Jay-Z has absolved the NFL from how they handled the situation which is why media and observers have picked up beef with him in the first place.


Rachael is a veteran gaming journalist with over 9 years of writing experience but has only just started within the gambling industry. She has built a keen interest within the iGaming sector over the years from exposure at events and intends to translate her passion into publications here at to keep our readers updated with the latest developments.

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