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Brown spoke to June Archer on ThisIs50.com in an episode published Wednesday.
Antonio Brown and Tom Brady of the Buccaneers celebrate their touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys at Raymond James Stadium on Sept. 9, 2021, in Tampa, Florida. (Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
When Archer tried to talk about Kaepernick and Brown’s free agency, the wide receiver dismissed any kind of comparisons between him and the quarterback who hasn’t played since 2016.
“Colin Kaepernick not AB. Colin Kaepernick not even from the hood. He’s not even from Liberty City. So, I don’t even want to mention his name,” the free-agent wide receiver said. “AB is a valuable football player. AB had stats last year, touchdowns.”
Brown grew up in Liberty City, a neighborhood of Miami. In 2019, Brown talked about the gang violence that was around him but was determined to not be defined by the negative environment and said he was lucky enough to have a support system around him to lead him down the path of football.
Archer started to talk about how Kaepernick has been “treated” and Brown interrupted, saying the free-agent quarterback has generally been treated well since leaving the 49ers, specifically mentioning the documentary he made with Netflix that aired last year on the streaming platform.
Colin Kaepernick participates in a throwing exhibition at Michigan Stadium on April 2, 2022, in Ann Arbor. (Jaime Crawford/Getty Images)
“He’s been treated good,” Brown said. “He got (a) Netflix documentary. Don’t get it twisted. See that’s the wrong thing about the world. We think, ‘Oh Kaepernick treated so bad because they don’t let him play football.’ Yeah, they didn’t let him play football, they gave him commercials. They gave him money. I’m not trying to tell you what ‘they’ did, I’m telling you the reality of what happened.”
Brown made clear the distinctions between him and Kaepernick.
“Kaepernick, I feel like he’s a great guy. He stood for a great cause but he don’t understand. He’s not from Liberty City. He’s not even built like that. Dudes like me, they ban you. They don’t even give you contracts. They don’t even want to deal with you. I’m not really an icon right now. You don’t see them writing no books about me,” he said.
“You telling me, yo Colin Kaepernick, what did he do? What’s he at right now? Do you see him? I’m on the streets right now every day – people seeing me. They get excited. You know why? Because I make them feel good. They can relate. They know what’s really going on. But they know I still put on a smile and overcome it.
“Colin Kaepernick created all commotion then went in the cut in the corner. I’m in the people’s face every day.”
Kaepernick started a firestorm during the 2016 season when he knelt during the national anthem to protest against racial and social injustices. He was let go after the season and failed to latch onto another team. He accused NFL owners of collaborating to keep him out of the league – which was settled.
Antonio Brown looks on during the the Atlanta Hawks-Los Angeles Clippers game at State Farm Arena on March 11, 2022, in Atlanta, Georgia. (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Brown was released by the Buccaneers after storming off the field in a game in January.