Colin Kaepernick Does Not Love Football (Part II)
Everyone in America now knows about Nike and Colin Kaepernick's ad campaign....
The problem is it has nothing to do with social justice and everything to do with selling sneakers.
Off of the top of your head, do you remember the player who quickly joined Kaepernick in kneeling? His name was Eric Reid and he is currently a free agent. A Safety by trade, Reid too is suing the NFL for collusion. Unlike Kap, Reid did NOT opt out of his contract looking for a bigger payday, he's a quality free agent just looking for a team. Reid's predicament is actually much MORE suspicious than Kaepernick's. Reid is looking for a job, not looking to break the bank. He's younger than Kaepernick, but is coming off of a recent knee surgery. You may argue that no one wants to talk about a safety from a 6-10 football team, and I'll listen to that, but I would counter that there's more jobs for someone of Reid's experience and skill set.
Remember, Kaepernick's stats were of a run-of-the-mill QB and he wanted to be paid like an elite quarterback. Teams wanted to low-ball Kaepernick and pay him like a backup. That's why he's unemployed today. It's really that simple. Reid, on the other hand, should be on lots of teams' radars. Every team is looking for safety depth at the right price.
Why didn't Nike choose Reid as the face of their Just Do It campaign? Because Eric Reid doesn't sell shoes. Even the most casual sports fan knows who Colin Kaepernick is and by making him the face of the Nike campaign just generated millions of dollars in free publicity. Both by those who love the decision (the Left) and those who hate the decision (the Trumpies).
Young men, specifically young black men, love what they perceive that Nike has done. Nike stuck it to the MAN. They don't understand that Nike made a marketing decision based on their political preferences. Those middle-aged Trump supporters who are furious with Nike aren't the ones who they're trying to sell shoes to.
(How many times have I said Nike in the last paragraph alone?)
According to FIFA, the best female soccer player in America is Megan Rapinoe. She scores goals at an incredible clip and is one of the faces of the national team. She also has a contract with Nike. Why are we bringing up Ms. Rapinoe? She was the first one to kneel in Women's Soccer. She caused quite a stir when she knelt before the Seattle Reign and the Chicago Red Stars game back in 2016.
Rapinoe frequently speaks out on social injustices and for LGBT causes. She is active in the community and recently graced the cover of ESPN the Magazine.
As a business decision, why didn't Nike make Rapinoe the face of Nike's 30th Anniversary Just Do It campaign? Because the casual sports fan doesn't give a F#CK about Megan Rapinoe. Her image doesn't sell sneakers. Try taking the same wording on the Kap ad and slap it over the photo above. Is your key demographic jazzed about that political statement?
I'm not trying to be mean, I'm stating business facts. Nike chose an athlete, with whom they thought would generate the most buzz on media sites across North America. For Example:
The Daily Beast
There are obscure social justice warriors everywhere, very few help move massive amounts of sports gear.
I'm going to go out on a limb and make a prediction. Today it was announced that Nike's stock went down 3%. That's because the Trumpies are pissed. Wait for the other shoe to drop, so to speak, sometime around November. That's when Nike will announce that they had a spike in sales in their 3rd Quarter.
Editor's Note: 8 hours later....
Editor's Note: December19,2018
If you are looking for 'social justice,' you should have hitched your wagon to Eric Reid. I saw the above article in Great Britain and it reinforced everything I've been saying. There are better examples out there than Kaepernick, but the Kaepernick Brand sells more merchandise. At this point, Kaepernick doesn't want to play football, he wants a monetary settlement from the NFL. Another football player making money by NOT playing football.
Let's see if ESPN or CNN picks up the story. Time check 6:58 am.