A new ad from Nike starring Colin Kapernick is set to air Thursday night on the telecast of the NFL’s season opener featuring the Philadelphia Eagles and the Atlanta Falcons. The ad apparently likens acts of genuine heroism, which it illustrates, with Kaepernick’s much ballyhooed statement, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”
The ad begins with a young boy attempting to skateboard down a sloping metal gate before falling off as a voice-over of Kaepernick intones, “If people say your dreams are crazy, if they laugh at what you think you can do,” as the scene shifts to a boy with no legs doing pushups and participating in a wrestling match.
Kaepernick continues, “Good. Stay that way. Because what non-believers fail to understand is that calling a dream crazy is not an insult, it’s a compliment,” as the video shows someone surfing a huge wave, and a girl in a wheelchair dribbling two basketballs.
The scene shifts to a young boy running as the voiceover states, “Don’t try to be the fastest runner in your school,” as the video cuts to a shot of adult runners, “Or the fastest in the world, be the fastest ever.”
Kaepernick continues, “Don’t picture yourself wearing LBJ’s jersey; picture LBJ wearing yours. Don’t settle for homecoming queen or linebacker: do both. Lose 120 pounds and become an Ironman after beating a brain tumor. Don’t believe you have to be like anybody to be somebody.” As the screen shows Alphonso Davies, who was born in Ghana but played for the Canadian national team when he was 16, Kaepernick adds, “If you’re born a refugee, don’t let it stop you from playing soccer for the national team at age 16.”
The video cuts to shots of Lebron James playing basketball, then dedicating his I Promise school, as Kaepernick intones, “Don’t become the best basketball player on the planet; be bigger than basketball.”
The video cuts to a shot of Kaepernick from behind as he stares at a giant American flag projected on a building as he intones, “Believe in something.” As Kaepernick turns to face the camera, he continues, “Even if it means sacrificing everything.”
The video shows the U.S. women’s soccer team as Kaepernick continues, “When they talk about the greatest team in the history of the sport, make sure it’s your team.” That is followed by a shot of Shaquem Griffin as Kaepernick states, “If you have only one hand, don’t just watch football, play it at the highest level.”
Switching to Serena Williams, Kaepernick opines, “And if you’re a girl from Compton, don’t just become a tennis player, become the greatest athlete ever. Yeah, that’s more like it.”
Finally, the video shows Kaepernick striding along as he says to the camera, “So don’t ask if your dreams are crazy; ask if they’re crazy enough.”
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) September 5, 2018