Less than a day following Colin Kaepernick's scheduled NFL workout in Atlanta, reports came out that hip-hop mogul and NFL partner in promoting social justice Jay Z was "disappointed" in Kaepernick's camp moving the scheduled workout.
The reasoning behind moving the scheduled workout was an inability for Kaepernick and the NFL's camp to find a compromise on how the workout was to be held. According to sources, this included the NFL disallowing outside cameras or Kaepernick's camp from videotaping the workout and a waiver that included the statement that included an article that disallowed Kaepernick from that legal actions against them for any reason. Earlier this, Kaepernick settled out of court with the league following a grievance over a year old stating that the league was conspiring to keep him out of the game.
Kaepernick, despite an impressive resume during his time with San Francisco, has not played in the NFL since after the 2016 season. It is largely believed that this is because, during the season, Kaepernick protested police brutality and racial injustice by kneeling during the national anthem, sparking a national debate that was felt throughout the country.
Kaepernick's workout was originally held at the practice field of the Atlanta Falcons, but following the disagreements, the workout was moved to a local Atlanta high school that was videotaped. At least eight different teams sent officials and scouts to watch the quarterback. This decision has come with both praise and criticism from Kaepernick supporters. It was reported that Jay Z was disappointed in Kaepernick for changing the location and not signing the waiver, even going so far as saying that it was more of a publicity stunt.
ESPN's Stephen A. Smith was also very critical of Kaepernick's decision to move the workout, questioning his commitment to whether he wants to play football, saying "he don't want to play, he wants to be a martyr." This has led to a Twitter feud between Smith and a former teammate of Kaepernick and Carolina Panthers defensive back Eric Reid.
However, Roc Nation, the label founded by Jay Z, who is also still the President, claims that these comments were never made.. The company sent out a statement and a tweet saying that Jay Z had not even spoken to any sources about Kaepernick. Jay Z was criticized earlier this year for saying, "we've moved past kneeling," during a public meeting after agreeing to partner with the NFL to push racial equality. The saying looked to imply a removal of Kaepernick from the conversation he sparked.