NFL: Tom Brady, Colin Kaepernick Included in Time Magazine's '100 Most Influential' List
NFL quarterbacks Tom Brady and Colin Kaepernick were both included in Time Magazine's "100 Most Influential People" list for 2017. There are five sections in the list, which also includes "Pioneers", "Artists", and "Leaders", and Brady was named under the category of "Titans" while Kaepernick was under "Icons".
Brady, who has stamped his mark as the greatest NFL quarterback of all time after winning his fifth Super Bowl title last season, has been given an essay by talk show host Conan O'Brien on his addition to the list. O'Brien indicated that the 39-year-old four-time Super Bowl MVP "all but wrote his own tribute" after winning Super Bowl LI, calling him the "greatest quarterback of all time", as per CBS Sports.
The TBS host then said it was Brady's willpower that enabled him to become as great as he is right now. O'Brien said that Brady does not "have to be this good", but "he simply refused to be less than the best ever".
Meanwhile, Kaepernick was on the list for a reason other than football. He has not won a Super Bowl in six professional seasons and has only been there once. In perspective, Kaepernick is almost 50,000 yards behind Brady when it comes to passing and is 388 touchdowns short of what the New England Patriots signal-caller has scored in his career.
Fans would like to believe that Kaepernick was included for displaying courage by opposing the majority when he decided to sit or kneel down during the playing of the American National Anthem during games. Critics may say that he is not a good influence at all, although still influential.
Kaepernick's former San Francisco 49ers coach and now University of Michigan head coach, Jim Harbaugh, wrote the essay for him on the inclusion, saying that his former player was "alone in his early protests last year". Harbaugh was referring to the said kneeling incident, which said to have affected Kaepernick's professional reputation as he is still a free agent after more than a month in the market.
Teams have shied away from signing him despite being one of the better quarterbacks in the league and that was the risk he took when he decided to exercise his First Amendment right to show his personal conviction. Kaepernick has vowed to stand during the national anthem again next season, but it is without a doubt that his actions in the previous one, whether criticized or praised, has been really influential.
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