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Almost four years after he began protesting racial injustice and police brutality in America by sitting and then kneeling throughout the nationwide anthem in ~ NFL games, Colin Kaepernick remains out that a job.

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Kaepernick, currently a 32-year-old complimentary agent quarterback who hasn"t played in the NFL since the critical week that the 2016 season, finished up spending 6 years with the 49ers prior to his peaceful protest brought about his apparently gaining blackballed by the league"s team owners. He continues to be a polarizing civil civil liberties activist to this day also though the is no longer granted the communication of NFL quarterback.


Which is why Kaepernick"s name was instantly referenced when the NFL newly released what to be digested together an empty statement on George Floyd"s death at the hand of Minneapolis police. Similar responses came when Kaepernick"s previous team made its very own statements on injustice amid global protests that Floyd"s death.

Four years ago, however, Kaepernick"s protests during the nationwide anthem to be much much more of a societal wedge than similar demonstrations are today. In the days, weeks, months and years ~ Kaepernick first explained why he was protesting, trenches were occupied. Some understood and applauded Kaepernick"s efforts. Rather failed to different the reason of the protests native the method of protest and repeatedly chastised the quarterback.


Below is the timeline from then until now, an outline the details a crossfire that praise and also ridicule aimed at Kaepernick over the last 4 years. It starts with the night his previously undetected protesting to be noticed by a reporter.

MORE: Why walk Colin Kaepernick kneel?

Colin Kaepernick kneeling timeline

Aug. 26, 2016 — Kaepernick, that at the moment is start his 6th NFL season, all with the 49ers, sits top top the bench throughout the nationwide anthem prior to San Francisco"s preseason home game against Green Bay. It"s no the very first time he has actually sat during the anthem, yet his activity is noticed by reporters.

"I am no going to stand up to present pride in a flag because that a nation that oppresses black people and also people that color," Kaepernick tells NFL Media after the game. "To me, this is bigger than football and also it would certainly be selfish top top my part to look the various other way. There room bodies in the street and people acquiring paid leave and getting away through murder."

Aug. 27, 2016 — The 49ers and the NFL worry statements ~ above Kaepernick"s protest the night before. Indigenous the team: "The national anthem is and constantly will it is in a special component of the pre-game ceremony. It is an chance to respect our country and reflect top top the great liberties we space afforded together its citizens. In respecting such American values as flexibility of religion and also freedom that expression, we identify the right of an separation, personal, instance to choose and also participate, or not, in ours celebration that the national anthem."

From the league: "Players room encouraged but not forced to stand during the playing of the national anthem."

Aug. 30, 2016 — former Seahawks player and Green Beret Nate Boyer writes an open up letter to Kaepernick from the perspective of a supportive military member. The 2 meet in person a work later, and Boyer speak Kaepernick into transforming his method of protest from sit to kneeling during the nationwide anthem out of respect.

"We sorta pertained to a center ground wherein he would take a knee together his teammates," Boyer tells HBO. "Soldiers take a knee in front of a fallen brother"s grave, you know, to show respect. When we"re top top a patrol, you know, and also we go into a security halt, we take a knee, and we pull security."


Thanks for the invite brother... Great talk. Let"s simply keep moving forward. This is what America should be all around pic.twitter.com/LgjPpjk173

— Nate Boyer (

Sept. 1, 2016 — Kaepernick proceeds with his new method of protest, kneeling rather than sitting, before the 49ers" final preseason game, a roadway contest versus the Chargers. This time that is joined by mountain Francisco security Eric Reid. This i do not care the duo"s an approach of protest for the whole season.

Sept. 1, 2016 — after the Chargers game, Kaepernick pledges to donate $1 million of his 2016 salary to establishments he believes can assist his cause. "The media painted this as I"m anti-American, anti-men and women the the military, and that"s no the case at all," the says. "I realize the men and women of the armed forces go out and also sacrifice their lives and put us in harm"s method for my freedom of speech and also my for free in this country, and also my flexibility to take it a chair or take a knee. So I have actually the utmost respect for them. ...

"The blog post is we have a lot of problems in this nation that we have to deal with. We have a lot of of people that are oppressed. We have actually a lot of civilization that aren"t cure equal, given equal opportunities. Police brutality is a huge thing that demands to it is in addressed. There are a lot of of issues that need to be talked about, come be brought to life, and we need to fix those."


Kaepernick7 was asked if the or his protests might be viewed as un-American.This to be his answer: pic.twitter.com/0ATDqYUehC

— ESPN (

Sept. 3, 2016 — First-year 49ers coach Chip Kelly offers Blaine Gabbert the beginning QB job over Kaepernick, that is quiet recovering a pair of offseason surgeries (thumb, knee) on peak of the shoulder surgical procedure that finished his 2015 season. "I think (Gabbert"s) grasp and command that what we"re doing, ns think he"s a an excellent fit for what we want to get accomplished," Kelly says. "I have actually a the majority of confidence in what he deserve to do with us offensively."

Sept. 5, 2016 — President Barack Obama defends Kaepernick"s protest. "He"s working out his constitutional ideal to do a statement," Obama says at a news conference throughout the G20 summit in China. "I think over there is a long background of sports numbers doing so. Ns think there are a lot of ways you can do it when it involves the flag and national anthem."

Sept. 7, 2016 — NFL commissioner i get it Goodell breaks his silence and issues his an initial public comments on Kaepernick"s protests. "I don"t have to agree through what he is doing," Goodell says, adding, "I assistance our players when they desire to see change in society, and also we don"t live in a perfect society. ~ above the other hand, we believe an extremely strongly in patriotism in the NFL. I personally believe really strongly in that."

Sept. 11, 2016 — on the very first Sunday that the 2016 season, countless NFL players monitor Kaepernick"s lead and protest gyeongju injustice during the national anthem before their games.


Roundup of #NFL players participating in protests on Sunday. Pic.twitter.com/ToDpZYod7z

— Jordan heck (

Sept. 12, 2016 — Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump states Kaepernick and also other players protesting during the nationwide anthem should leave the country. "You know, you space talking around a major sport, probably the significant sport, and also when you see that and it leads to a lot of other things," trump card says. "I think it"s a great lack of respect and appreciation because that our country and I really stated they should try another country, check out if they favor it better. See how well they"ll it is in doing. See if they room going to it is in making $20 million being a second-string quarterback."

Sept. 22, 2016 — Time newspaper puts Kaepernick top top the covering of its Oct. 5 issue.

Sept. 27, 2016 — Kaepernick responds to Trump"s case that the protests room "a lack of respect" because that the united States. "He always says do America an excellent again," Kaepernick claims of the presidential candidate. "Well America has never been great for civilization of color. That"s miscellaneous that demands to it is in addressed. Let"s make America an excellent for the first time."

Oct. 7, 2016 — Kaepernick agrees to restructure his contract v the 49ers. The brand-new deal eliminates his guaranteed money because that 2017, voids the last 3 years that the contract and also gives Kaepernick the best to opt out after 2016. Before the renegotiation, Kaepernick protects himself with a $7.5 million loss-of-value insurance money policy.

Oct. 11, 2016 — Kelly announces Kaepernick will certainly make his season debut as the 1-4 49ers" starter in main 6 against the Bills. That completes just 13 the 29 passes in a 45-16 loss however remains mountain Francisco"s starter the rest of the season.

Nov. 8, 2016 — Kaepernick chooses no to vote in the 2016 presidential election. "It was embarrassing come watch the these space our two candidates," he states of Trump and also Hillary Clinton. "Both space proven liars, and it practically seems choose they"re trying to debate who"s less racist. And also at this point ... You need to pick the lesser of two evils. However in the end, it"s quiet evil."

Dec. 4, 2016 — Kaepernick gets benched by Kelly in the fourth quarter of a loss come the Bears that drops the 49ers come 1-11. That starts again the adhering to week versus the Jets.

March 1, 2017 — Kaepernick"s agents tell NFL groups he will opt out of his contract through the 49ers. The relocate comes 2 months after ~ Kelly and general manager Trent Baalke were fired by san Francisco and also eventually changed by new coach Kyle Shanahan and GM man Lynch. Previous reports had actually indicated the 49ers to plan to relax Kaepernick had he not opted out.

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March 18, 2017 — The signings that lesser QBs in NFL totally free agency add to the skepticism that Kaepernick is gift blackballed through NFL teams. Bleacher Report publishes a story on how NFL front-office varieties still want nothing to perform with the after his protests throughout the national anthem.

June 5, 2017 — The Seahawks, a team that was interested in signing Kaepernick, instead add Austin Davis come the roster. "Colin’s been a an excellent football player and he’s walking to continue to be," Seattle coach Pete Carroll says a pair days prior. "At this time, us didn"t carry out anything with it. We recognize where the is, who he is and also we had actually a possibility to recognize him much much more so. He’s a starter in this league and I can not imagine someone won’t give him a possibility to play."

July 31, 2017 — through his team considering signing Kaepernick, Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti asks civilization to pray for his franchise. "I recognize that we’re going come upset some people, and also I recognize that we’re going to make people happy that us stood up for somebody that has actually the best to carry out what the did,” Bisciotti says. “Non-violent protesting is something the we have actually all embraced. Ns don’t choose the way he walk it. Personally, I type of preferred it a lot as soon as he walk from sitting to kneeling. I don’t know, ns Catholic — we spend a lot of time kneeling.”

Baltimore coach john Harbaugh confirms the team has remained in contact through Kaepernick.

Aug. 25, 2017 — A year ~ Kaepernick"s first protest, thousands of his supporters phase a rally external the NFL"s headquarters in brand-new York. "We think that the NFL has been complicit in the ostracization that Colin Kaepernick,” says Symone Sanders, a democratic strategist and CNN political analyst. “And today, it is time for the NFL to take it a stand."

Sept. 22, 2017 — Trump speak a group of pendant in Alabama the players who protest throughout the national anthem must be fired: "Get that son of a bitch off the field right now."


Trump desire NFL owners would tell anthem protesters "get that son of a bitch turn off the ar right now" pic.twitter.com/gq4EH3lNoY

— Washington Examiner (

Sept. 24, 2017 — A couple days after Trump says players that kneel during the nationwide anthem need to be fired, football player from countless teams protest en masse, with members of several teams continuing to be in the locker room when the anthem is played. That same day, Trump motivates fans to avoid going come NFL games until football player "stop disrespecting our Flag & Country."

Sept. 26, 2017 — as protests during the nationwide anthem proceed at NFL games, chairman Trump claims Goodell should have suspended Kaepernick, who remains unsigned. Trump also tweets the following: "The NFL has actually all species of rules and regulations. The only method out because that them is to set a dominance that girlfriend can"t kneel during our nationwide Anthem!"

Sept. 26, 2017 — Cowboys owner Jerry Jones locks arms and kneels with players prior to the play of the nationwide anthem on a Monday night in Arizona. He and also the players then was standing for the really anthem.


Oct. 8, 2017 — Vice chairman Mike Pence attends a Colts vs. 49ers game in Indianapolis but leaves after football player protest throughout the nationwide anthem. "(President Trump) and also I will certainly not dignify any event the disrespects our soldiers, our Flag, or our nationwide Anthem," Pence tweets, later on adding, "At a time when so many Americans are motivating our country with their courage, resolve, and resilience, now, an ext than ever, we need to rally about our Flag and everything the unites us. While everyone is licensed has been granted to their very own opinions, ns don"t think it"s too lot to questioning NFL football player to respect the Flag and our national Anthem."

Oct. 8, 2017 — Kaepernick confirms to CBS he still desires to play in the NFL and is working out every job in preparation of one opportunity.

Oct. 15, 2017 — Kaepernick hires attorney mark Geragos and files a grievance under the CBA for collusion versus NFL owners. The filing says that NFL team owners "have colluded come deprive Mr. Kaepernick the employment rights in retaliation for Mr. Kaepernick"s leadership and advocacy because that equality and social justice and also his pass awareness to peculiar establishments still undermining racial equality in the joined States."

Geragos says the grievance was filed "only after follow every feasible avenue through all NFL teams and their executives.""

Dec. 6, 2017 — Beyonce provides a surprised appearance come hand Kaepernick the Muhammad Ali heritage Award at sporting activities Illustrated"s Sportsperson of the Year ceremony. "With or without the NFL’s platform, ns will continue to work-related for the people," Kaepernick says.

March 15, 2018 — Another free agency duration opens and also plays the end without Kaepernick receiving an sell to sign with a team.

April 18, 2018 — through Kaepernick present, his attorneys depose Goodell at the NFL"s headquarters. Likewise sitting because that depositions at miscellaneous points in the grievance procedure are high-profile NFL names like Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, Broncos general manager john Elway and Patriots owner Robert Kraft.

May 2, 2018 — after Reid goes v the very first waves of complimentary agency unsigned, the NFLPA files a grievance on the safety"s behalf. Reid is being stood for by Kaepernick"s attorney.

May 23, 2018 — The NFL announces a new rule versus kneeling throughout the national anthem. It provides players the option of remaining in the locker room, instead. “We want world to it is in respectful to the national anthem,” Goodell says. “We want people to stand. That’s all personnel, and make sure they law this moment in a respectful fashion. That’s something us think we owe. We have been really sensitive in making certain we provide players choices, however we do believe that that moment is important and one we are going to emphasis on.”

A job later, trump card praises the league"s brand-new anthem stance.


realDonaldTrump: “You need to stand proudly because that the nationwide anthem or you shouldn"t it is in playing, you shouldn"t be there, possibly you shouldn"t be in the country." https://t.co/syjhxsoPzO

Aug. 3, 2018 — individuals realize Kaepernick"s name has been edited the end of a song on the soundtrack of EA Sports" "Madden NFL 19," evidently because that the 2nd year in a row. His surname is eventually included back to the song in the game.

Aug. 9, 2018 — The NFL release a statement that announces players will not be disciplined because that protesting throughout the nationwide anthem in spite of the league"s policy: "The NFL has actually been involved in constructive discussions v the NFL players Association concerning the anthem and issues the equality and also social righteousness that space of issue to countless Americans. While those discussions continue, the NFL has agreed to delay implementing or enforcing any type of club work rules that could an outcome in players being disciplined for their conduct during the power of the anthem. 

"Meanwhile, there has actually been no change in the NFL’s policy concerning the national anthem. The anthem will proceed to it is in played prior to every game, and all player and non-player personnel on the ar at that time are expected to stand throughout the presentation that the flag and also performance that the anthem. Personnel who carry out not wish to do so can choose to continue to be in the locker room."

Aug. 30, 2018 — The NFL"s request for a summary judgment dismissing Kaepernick"s grievance is garbage by an independent arbitrator, allowing the situation to relocate forward to trial.

Sept. 3, 2018 — Nike uses Kaepernick together the face of an advertisement campaign. The reactions range from applause to burning shoes.


Believe in something, even if it way sacrificing everything. #JustDoIt pic.twitter.com/SRWkMIDdaO

— Colin Kaepernick (

Sept. 27, 2018 — Kaepernick congratulates Reid on gift signed by the Panthers. "Congratulations to mine brother, an All-Pro safety and security who should have been signed the first day of cost-free agency, who has signed a football contract," Kaepernick write on Instagram. "He has was the an initial person to kneel together me. Eric is a society justice warrior, proceeds to support his wife, two beautiful daughters and communities in need."

Feb. 15, 2019 — Kaepernick and Reid reach settlements in their collusion grievances versus the NFL. "For the previous several months, counsel because that Mr. Kaepernick and also Mr. Reid have engaged in an ongoing dialogue through representatives of the NFL," attorney note Geragos and also the NFL speak in a joint statement. "As a an outcome of those discussions, the parties have made decision to solve the pending grievances. The resolution the this issue is subject to a confidentiality commitment so there will certainly be no additional comment by any type of party."

March 21, 2019 — The wall surface Street newspaper reports the NFL paid much less than $10 million to clear up the grievances that Kaepernick and Reid.

Aug. 8, 2019 — Kaepernick sends post to NFL teams as soon as he tweets an intense workout video. "Five a.m. Five days a week. For 3 years. Quiet ready," he claims in the tweet.


Aug. 9, 2019 — Asked about Kaepernick"s article the work before, trumped claims he would "love to see" the QB ago in the NFL. “Only if he’s an excellent enough,” trump card says. “If that was good enough, they’d rental him. Why wouldn’t he play if the was great enough? ns think if he’s great enough, I know the owners – I understand (Patriots owner Robert) Kraft, I understand so many of the owner — if he’s an excellent enough, they’d sign him. I understand these people. Lock would authorize him in a heartbeat. Castle would carry out anything they have the right to to success games. Therefore I’d favor to see it."

Oct. 9, 2019 — Citing Kaepernick, Rihanna confirms she turned under a possibility to be the Super key 54 halftime performer. "I couldn"t dare carry out that," she tells Vogue. "For what? who gains native that? no my people. I just couldn"t it is in a sellout. Ns couldn"t be an enabler. There"s points within that organization that I perform not agree v at all, and also I to be not around to go and be of organization to them in any type of way."

Nov. 13, 2019 — ESPN reports the NFL has arranged a workout for Kaepernick so teams can assess his "readiness" and "level that interest" in a potential go back to the league. Kaepernick receives word of the exercise in Atlanta just a couple of days ahead of time, but he expresses his excitement "to check out the head coaches and also GMs" who can attend.

After the organization apparently reverses food on sending Kaepernick a perform of team officials would attend the workout, Reid among others becomes suspicious the the NFL"s motives. "It"s disingenuous," Reid says. "They want the appearance of giving Colin a chance, however they offer him 2 hours" notice and phone call (him) it needs to be top top a Saturday when they understand decision-makers space traveling. Therefore is this real? We"ll see."

Nov. 18, 2019 — top top the morning the the workout, Kaepernick and also his representatives decide to move the place on brief notice. Kaepernick"s camp states it readjusted venues because the NFL to be not enabling for full transparency (specifically, media accessibility and suitable video clip recording) at the Falcons" facility. Kaepernick also objected come the non-standard injury waiver the organization wanted him to sign. Just some that the team representatives who came to watch Kaepernick follow him from the Falcons" basic in Flowery Branch, Ga., come the field at Charles R. Attracted High college in Riverdale, Ga.

"I"ve been prepared for 3 years. I"ve to be denied for 3 years," Kaepernick claims after the workout at the brand-new location. "We all understand why. I came out there and showed it this day in prior of everybody. Stop running from the truth. Avoid running from the people."


May 29, 2020 — Kaepernick defends protests after George Floyd"s fatality at the hands of Minneapolis police. "When civility leader to death, revolting is the just logical reaction," Kaepernick says. "The cries for peace will rain down, and also when castle do, they will land on hearing disabled ears, since your violence has lugged this resistance. We can fight back! rest in power George Floyd."

May 30, 2020 — The NFL publication a explain on the fatality of Floyd and also the ensuing global protests, and also the organization winds increase with heavy doses that Kaepernick in that mentions, with countless of the reaction in the vein of, "You might have led the fight versus police brutality and also racial injustice 4 years ago, yet instead girlfriend worked against peaceful protesters choose Kaepernick." The 49ers get a similar reminder as soon as they take part in black Tuesday.

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June 5, 2020 — Goodell offers one more statement, this time via video, ~ the NFL is referred to as out through a group of star players requesting a much more sincere response. "We, the nationwide Football League, recognize we to be wrong for not listening come NFL players earlier, and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest," Goodell says. Numerous criticize Goodell for no specifically pointing out Kaepernick"s name.