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  • San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick pumps his fist as he acknowledges the cheers from fans.

    San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick pumps his fist as he acknowledges the cheers from fans. | Photo: Reuters

Published 5 January 2017

All rumors that the NFL player was dividing his locker room by taking a knee to protest police brutality are now proven false.

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick was given his team’s most prestigious award voted on by the players and staff who seem to have been moved by his protest against police brutality and killings of Black people by taking a knee during the playing of the U.S. national anthem ahead of NFL games.

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The 49ers announced their team awards Friday where Kaepernick was the winner of the Len Eshmont Award, given to the teammate who "best exemplifies the inspirational and courageous play of Len Eshmont, an original member of the 1946 49ers team."

ESPN said the award is considered the most prestigious honor the players vote on. The award was established after Eshmont died in 1957.

All rumors that the NFL player was dividing his locker room by taking a knee to protest police brutality are now proven false.

Just recently Kaepernick spoke about the support of his teammates and how they supported his cause. "It's very impactful, and I think they are people who have very strong character," Kaepernick said last month according to ESPN.

"And to have the ability to really recognize what's going on, how it not only affects them, but it affects their families and affects other people that look like them, is something that's very powerful — and I'm very happy to have teammates like that, that have that type of character, that have those type of ethics and humanity."

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Kaepernick announced last week he would donate a million dollars of his salary to organizations fighting against social and racial oppression and injustice, adding the donations will be tracked through a website.

The NFL star made headlines in August when he kicked off a peaceful protest to highlight police brutality and killings against Black people and other people of color by refusing to stand during the playing of the U.S. national anthem. He kneeled ahead of every game of the season.

He has vowed to continue his protest until the end of racial injustice in the United States even after being attacked by some pro-police and pro-military people in the country who called his protest unpatriotic and an insult to the country’s army, which he denied.

The NFL star has also garnered tremendous support from current and former professional athletes as well as many anti-racist organizations around the country. During most of the season’s games his teammates Eric Reid and Eli Harold joined the protest and kneeled during the playing the anthem.

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