Off-the-field contrast of Kaepernick, JJ Watt

Colin Kaepernick might not find himself on the cover of the Madden NFL video games any time soon, but his image is featured on the cover of GQ magazine on its Citizen of the Year issue for 2017.

Kaepernick captured the attention of Americans in 2016 when he took a knee during the national anthem to protest racial inequality, specifically, how blacks are treated by law enforcement officers.

GQ says says the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback's protest puts him in rare company in sports history.

The 30-year-old Kaepernick declined to be interviewed for the article, but he did pose for photographs in the Harlem borough of New York City.

Kaepernick became a free agent in March 2017 and has remained unsigned throughout the 2017 NFL season.

The Houston Texans front office and coaching staff contemplated bringing Kaepernick in for workouts since starting quarterback Deshaun Watson will miss the rest of the season with an ACL injury, but the team never followed through.

Kaepernick filed a grievance against NFL owners over collusion.

The GQ issue marks the first time it is naming a Citizen of the Year.

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