Detroit rapper Eminem took the show over during the halftime show in the Super Bowl. He took a knee during the performance alongside other stars such as Snoop Dog, 50 Cent, Mary J. Blige, and Dr.Dre. This has become one of the most talked-about moments of the year’s arguably biggest sporting event. Eminem performed one of his most iconic songs, “Lose Yourself”, the 15-time Grammy winner dropped to one knee and held his head.
Eminem’s tribute to Colin Kaepernick
Many believed this was a reference to the free-agent quarterback and activist Colin Kaepernick. Kaepernick spearheaded the kneeling protest against police brutality, in 2016. Kaepernick knelt during the national anthem to bring attention to police brutality and racial injustice taking place the country. However, the response he received in return was quite opposite than many thought. He was later blackballed and kept off the field because of the protests.
In 2017, former President Trump spoke out against players kneeling, saying they were “ruining the game.” However, after the murder of George Floyd by a police officer, NBA players and coaches took a knee during the national anthem to start the 2020-21 season to make a statement.
NFL spokesperson Brian McCarthy said in a statement to CBS News that they understood that Eminem was going to kneel during the show, reported Christopher Brito of CBS News. They attempt to dispute the report that the league told Eminem not to kneel during the show.
“We watched all elements of the show during multiple rehearsals this week and were aware that Eminem was going to do that,” McCarthy said. “This was not an area of concern. A player or coach could have taken a knee today and there would not have been an issue.”
Following the show, the Los Angeles Rams defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20 after a late-game touchdown by Matthew Stafford. Ram’s defensive tackle Aaron Donald also came up big in the final seconds of the game that helped secure the victory.