LeBron speaks on Kaepernick, Jay-Z &more.
LeBron James, like plenty of other athletes across all sports, feels like former QB Colin Kaepernick is being blackballed by the NFL. After the Cleveland Cavaliers practice on Sunday, LeBron spoke with reporters about Kaepernick and how some other quarterbacks in the league are "nowhere near as talented as him."
LeBron made it clear that he was in Kaepernick's corner well before his comments over the weekend, but he reiterated his stance while speaking with ESPN.
"I love football, but I'm not part of the NFL," James told ESPN. "I don't represent the NFL. I don't know their rules and regulations. But I do know Kap is getting a wrong doing. I do know that. Just watching, he's an NFL player. He's an NFL player and you see all these other quarterbacks out there and players out there that get all these second and third chances that are nowhere near as talented as him. It just feels like he's been blackballed out of the NFL. So, I definitely do not respect that."
"The only reason I could say he's not on a team is because the way he took a knee," James said. "That's the only reason. I watch football every Sunday, every Thursday, every Monday night. I see all these quarterbacks -- first-string, second-team, third-team quarterbacks -- that play sometimes when the starter gets hurt or are starters that play. Kap is better than a lot of those guys. Let's just be honest."
In speaking about Kaepernick, LeBron also mentioned how he and some of his Cavs teammates attended Jay-Z's show at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit over the weekend, and discussed the track "The Story of O.J.," which he says should resonate with every black person in the world.
"It should resonate with every black person in the world, especially in the United States, though," James said. "Just the injustice of what's going on, and it painted a picture of the whole 'don't judge a book by its cover' type issue that we got to go through. So, having a mentor and a big brother and a family member like Jay has always been key to my success and key to me being as great as I can be. He broke the mold, and I always just try to learn from him and try to give back to him and give him inspiration as well."
Jay-Z responded to critics of the ongoing NFL protests last week during the Miami stop of his 4:44 Tour, saying, "I want y'all to understand when people are kneeling and fists up, what they're doing is not about a flag. It's about justice, it's about injustice."
LeBron and the Cavs, 9-7, will take on the Pistons in Detroit tonight.