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MIAMI, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 02: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell looks on before Super Bowl LIV between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers at Hard Rock Stadium on February 02, 2020 in Miami, Florida.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said he supports and encourages the football league’s teams to sign quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who hasn’t played in the NFL since the 2016 season.

The 32-year-old NFL star is a former member of the San Francisco 49ers.  During Kaepernick’s time as a 49er, he kneeled during the national anthem to protest police brutality, which caused a lot of backlash.

Goodell recently did an interview with Mike Greenberg for ESPN‘s The Return of Sports special, and he said it would be a team’s decision to sign Kaepernick. He also said he welcomes Kaepernick’s voice regarding social issues.

“Well, listen, if he wants to resume his career in the NFL, then obviously it’s going to take a team to make that decision,” Goodell said. “But I welcome that, support a club making that decision and encourage them to do that.

RIVERDALE, GA – NOVEMBER 16: Colin Kaepernick looks on during his NFL workout held at Charles R Drew high school on November 16, 2019 in Riverdale, Georgia. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

“If his efforts are not on the field but continuing to work in this space, we welcome him to that table and to help us, guide us, help us make better decisions about the kinds of things that need to be done in the communities. We have invited him in before, and we want to make sure that everybody’s welcome at that table and trying to help us deal with some very complex, difficult issues that have been around for a long time.”

“But I hope we’re at a point now where everybody’s committed to making long-term, sustainable change,” he continued. Roger Goodell released a video, earlier this month, apologizing on behalf of the NFL for not doing a better job of listening to the league’s players’ qualms around racial inequality. However, he received some criticism for not specifically mentioning Kaepernick by name.

Glennisha Morgan is a Detroit-bred multimedia journalist and writer. She writes about intersectionality, hip-hop, pop culture, queer issues, race, feminism, and her truth. Follow her on Twitter @GlennishaMorgan.

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