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NFL Social Justice Report Card

More than T-shirts and hashtags: Measuring social justice impacts in the NFL

As controversies regarding kneeling as a form of protest have receded from global headlines, little has been written about what those same athletes and organizations are doing now regarding the issues at the heart of the demonstrations.

Following up on the efforts at initiating social change, the NFL has increased community outreach.
At the Global Sport Institute at Arizona State University, we were curious about the actual impact the NFL was having in this “2.0” phase of athlete activism. We asked the NFL for, and received, internal reports on this activism. This represents our second report capturing the end-of-season detail – the first report was done at the NFL season midpoint. We hope we can do the same thing with other professional sports leagues.

In the meantime, we are identifying other cases of social justice activities by athletes in the U.S. and abroad, historical and current, and are working on a more comprehensive report that highlights the convergence of sport and social issues and how athletes and sport organizations have been sites for challenges to social justice and active towards furthering social justice.

Download the full report | Read the report on