With the NFL season kicking off for its first week of action on Thursday night, Colin Kaepernick remained one of the main focuses of attention.
Nike has made the former NFL quarterback and controversial figure the face of their new 30th anniversary “Just Do It” campaign. This fact alone brought a lot polarizing opinions from all sides, including John Rich: “Our Soundman just cut the Nike swoosh off his socks. Former marine. Get ready @Nike multiply that by the millions.”
— John Rich (@johnrich) September 3, 2018
On Thursday night then, when an advertisement by Nike during the game was aired, it wasn’t surprising that the campaign would again draw much attention. Part of the advertisement featured Kaepernick saying:
“If people say your dreams are crazy, if they laugh at what you think you can do, good,” Kaepernick says at the start of the ad. “Stay that way because what non-believers fail to understand is that calling a dream crazy is not an insult, it’s a compliment.”
The commercial also features LeBron James, Serena Williams, the U.S. women’s national soccer team, Canadian national team/MLS soccer player and African refugee Alphonso Davies and Shaquill Griffin, a linebacker who made the Seattle Seahawks’ roster last weekend.
President Trump responded by stating, “What was Nike thinking?”
What was Nike thinking?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 7, 2018
Several athletes and others voiced their support, while still others held Trump’s sentiments:
— Donté Stallworth (@DonteStallworth) September 7, 2018
The @Nike Ad is very POWERFUL AND BRILLIANTLY DONE!, if you don’t like it!, that’s fine too! I’m sure we can agree to disagree, and still get along, we are just to partisan on certain topics in my opinion @GaryEllerson
— leroy butler (@leap36) September 7, 2018
“I will never watch the NFL again after that commercial!”
(Flips through a couple of channels, checks Twitter, and email).
Puts Eagles-Falcons back on.
— Richard Deitsch (@richarddeitsch) September 7, 2018
This is certainly an interesting move by Nike, one that really has no precedence in this field of advertising, so it will likely be watched by many to see how it affects their brand and value- for the better or worse.