Bears' Akiem Hicks on Kaepernick Being Blackballed: 'We Signed Mike Glennon'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJune 3, 2020

GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN - DECEMBER 15: Akiem Hicks #96 of the Chicago Bears warms up before the game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field on December 15, 2019 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Chicago Bears defensive end Akiem Hicks offered his thoughts on Colin Kaepernick's continued unemployment and commented on his own team's decision not to sign Kaepernick during the 2017 offseason.

Hicks spoke passionately to reporters Wednesday about Kaepernick's decision to protest against police brutality and racial injustice during the national anthem starting in 2016, noting he thinks the Bears purposefully avoided the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, saying, "We signed Mike Glennon":

The killing of George Floyd has led many to reflect upon Kaepernick's activism.

Floyd was removed from his vehicle on May 25 by Minneapolis police officers who were investigating an alleged forgery in progress. The encounter was recorded and showed officer Derek Chauvin kneeling on Floyd's neck. Floyd told officers he couldn't breathe, yet Chauvin continued kneeling for nearly nine minutes and three other officers did not attempt to intervene. 

The four officers were fired, and prosecutors charged Chauvin with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, who has since taken over the case, amended the charge to second-degree murder and charged the other three officers with aiding and abetting murder.

In August 2016, Kaepernick told NFL Network's Steve Wyche he wasn't going to stand for the national anthem or "show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color."

Following the 2016 season, Kaepernick opted out of his contract with the 49ers, though general manager John Lynch later said the team was planning to release him.

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The 32-year-old has yet to sign another contract.

As well as selecting Mitchell Trubisky with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2017 draft, the Bears signed Glennon to a three-year deal worth $45 million that included $18.5 million in guaranteed money. He made four appearances before Chicago released him in March 2018.