More Positive Headlines for Kaepernick Than 2-Time Super Bowl Champ Rodgers San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) looks for a receiver during the second quarter of the team's NFC divisional playoff NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers in San Francisco, Jan. 12, 2013. (Tony Avelar/AP)
By Charles Kim | Saturday, 23 April 2022 11:20 AM
Even though former pro quarterback Colin Kaepernick has not suited up for a game since 2016, he still generates a higher percentage of positive headlines in the media than back-to-back league MVP, quarterback Aaron Rogers, a new Time2Play.com headline study found.
According to the data, 41% of articles Kaepernick was mentioned in showed positive sentiment from top journalism sites in 2021, compared to 33% for Rodgers.
Kaepernick led the San Francisco 49ers to a Super Bowl appearance following the 2012 season. Her last played in the NFL in 2016, the same year he started kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial injustice.
He left the league in March 2017, opting out of his contract with the 49ers.
Since, Kaepernick has taken on the role of a political activist advocating for social justice, including the writing of two children’s books on racism and abolishing the police, according to his website.
Kaepernick has been working out with others during the offseason and is hoping to return to the league in the fall, even if that is only as a backup quarterback, Sports Illustrated reported.
"That was actually my first time meeting him," Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields said following one of the joint workouts. "It was cool meeting him, of course. He’s an icon. It was awesome just to meet him and work with him. He looked pretty good. He looked good, yeah."
Rogers, on the other hand, generated controversy during the COVID-19 pandemic and his stance not to be vaccinated against the disease.
"Let's have a debate. Let's hear about sides. Wouldn't that be awesome?" People magazine reported Rogers saying during a podcast in December 2021. "When did Freedom of Speech— When did we lose the ability to respect somebody's opinion? My thoughts (on COVID-19) are just my own opinion on this matter."
Rogers signed a $150.8 million, three-year, deal in March, the Green Bay Press Gazette reported.
The resulting fallout appears to have alienated Rogers from positive coverage at top sports media outlets compared to Kaepernick’s more activist stance, according to Time2Play.
Tom Brady was the most popular name in the study with 11,684 mentions and a 55% positive headline rating.