Hundreds of Colin Kaepernick supporters rallied outside the NFL’s office in midtown Wednesday afternoon, urging team owners to sign the quarterback.
With chants like “NFL, stop acting wack, give a job to Kaepernick,” the crowd, which included City Councilman Jumaane Williams, NAACP board member Hazel Dukes and actress Susan Sarandon, urged the league not to punish the 29-year-old for expressing his freedom of speech on the field.
Last season, Kaepernick made headlines when he knelt during the singing of the national anthem before his games as a protest to racism in the country. He opted out of his contract to become a free agent after playing for the San Francisco 49ers last season, but no team has signed him for the coming season.
Harry B. Sando Jr., 40, a clothing manufacturer from Bed-Stuy, called the NFL hypocritical for sidelining Kaepernick.
“You can’t tell me you’re having men who beat their wives contracts and not give it to him. He hasn’t broken the law,” he said.
The NFL did not have an immediate response to the rally.
Kaepernick has a large list of supporters including former NYPD Det. Frank Serpico and Major League Baseball player Hank Aaron.
Marc Padro, 48, of Spanish Harlem, acknowledged that this will be an uphill battle, but the show of force outside Park Avenue would send the league a clear message.
“I feel more players need to stand up,” he said.