Rihanna reportedly turned down an opportunity to perform at halftime of Super Bowl 53 because she "supports Colin Kaepernick," according to US Weekly's Nicholas Hautman.
"The NFL and CBS really wanted Rihanna to be next year's performer in Atlanta," a source told Hautman. "They offered it to her, but she said no because of the kneeling controversy. She doesn't agree with the NFL's stance."
Kaepernick, 30, started kneeling during the national anthem in 2016 to protest racial inequality and police brutality. He has been a free agent since that campaign concluded, and he is currently in the midst of a legal battle with the NFL.
Kaepernick's collusion grievance against the league will move to trial after he alleged "owners violated their collective bargaining agreement with players by conspiring to keep him off teams," according to ESPN News Services.
With Rihanna unavailable, the NFL reportedly chose Maroon 5 to headline Super Bowl 53 halftime at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, per Variety's Jem Aswad and Shirley Halperin.
The Adam Levine-led outfit could be joined on stage by guest performers.
According to US Weekly, Cardi B—who collaborated with the band on its hit single "Girls Like You"—"may" make a cameo during the intermission spectacle.