Commentary

The NFL's Social Justice PSA

The NFL ran a PSA in Sunday’s conference championship games sharing the story of former NFL star Anquan Boldin (a cofounder of the Players Coalition), whose cousin Corey Jones was senselessly shot and killed by a Florida policeman in 2015.

The spot, from 72andSunny, is one of a series of PSAs the league has created to foster awareness of social-justice issues as part of its Inspire Change Platform, created last year. The league calls it the “signature spot” on the platform. It will also air in the Super Bowl.

It’s an understatement to say the NFL came to this party late.

How much better if Inspire Change (and resulting PSAs) had been its reaction the first time former San Francisco 49er quarterback Colin Kaepernick took a knee during the pre-game playing of the National Anthem in 2016. Somehow, back then, crushing the man’s career seemed the better response.

It’s also an understatement to say that driving awareness of issues like the injustice that African Americans disproportionately suffer at the hands of the police — and broader justice system — is important. What better platform to drive that awareness than the Super Bowl, with its 100 million+ audience?

So thank you, Colin, for the major role you played in making that happen. And to you Anquan, for the good work you and your cofounders are doing at the Players Coalition.

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