San Francisco 49ers star quarterback Colin Kaepernick doesn’t get praised as often as rival star QB Russell Wilson for his intangibles, and that’s understandable given just how awesome of a person Wilson is. Kaepernick, however, is also very much a team player, even if there are a few people who prefer to hang onto “Hatgate” as an anti-Kaep argument. Whether it’s defending teammates or talking about the importance of balancing out his financial needs with the 49ers cap flexibility, Kaepernick has shown a team-first mentality and does some pretty classy things.
One of them was recently giving words of support to Michael Sam, who will be the first openly gay player in NFL history. Even though he’ll likely be picked between the 4th and 7th rounds, I find it almost impossible to envision Sam not making it into the NFL, because he has plenty of natural talent and was the SEC’s Co-Defensive Player of the Year as a result.
Kaepernick said in an interview with ESPN, via the San Jose Mercury News’s Cam Inman, “When he steps into that locker room, everyone is going to know he’s there to help us win games. That’s why you’re in the NFL: to help us win games.”
Then there was this enlightening quote, “Nobody cares if you’re black, white, straight, gay, Christian, Jewish, whatever it may be. When you step on that field, you’re a member, in my case, the 49ers. That’s your job, your occupation.”
Carolina Panthers star QB Cam Newton is also one of the best young passers in the NFL, and the narrative on him used to be that he was a selfish, immature player. Thank goodness he’s turned that stupid narrative on its head, as he’s matured in each season in the league and made huge strides as a person and player over the past year. He also gave some words of support to Sam on the ESPN interview, “The main focus with football players is we’re here in this organization for one reason and one reason only, and if you’re helping us attain that winning success, your personal life is your personal life.”