Jerseys bearing the name and number of San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick were the top-selling jersey on the National Football League’s official online store on Tuesday, after he protested racial injustice and police brutality in the United States.
Kaepernick declined to stand during the playing of the national anthem ahead of a pre-season game late last month and a game last week, prompting both outrage and support from NFL players and fans.
On a list of all jerseys available on NFLShop.com, Kaepernick’s was first when arranged by “Top Sellers,” surpassing the jerseys for high-profile rookie players Carson Wentz of the Philadelphia Eagles and Ezekiel Elliott of the Dallas Cowboys.
Kaepernick is the 49er’s No. 2 quarterback, behind Blaine Gabbert, who was named the team’s starter for its home opener against the Los Angeles Rams on Monday.
Since Kaepernick began his protest, many fans have said on social media that they want to purchase his jersey as a sign of solidarity.
“I’ve never watched a football game but I’ve just bought a Colin Kaepernick jersey that I will proudly wear,” tweeted Twitter user Sean on Friday.
“I need a Colin Kaepernick jersey asap,” tweeted Oliver Ellison on Tuesday.
“(It’s) iconic now.” Sales of Kaepernick’s jersey have soared since the 49ers quarterback began his protest, according to an ESPN report over the weekend that cited “a source with knowledge of sales numbers”.
The 49ers on Tuesday said they had no immediate comment about the sales of Kaepernick’s jerseys, while Nike Inc, maker of the NFL’s jerseys, said on Tuesday it does not comment on the sales of individual products. The NFL could not immediately be reached for comment.