Like a contracted contagion you never fully eradicate…

For the upcoming Super Bowl, the focus for casual and non-fans is often on the commercials, a side interest for those with diminished interest in the contest between the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs. The NFL and the networks profit handsomely during the game, as commercial spots this year are priced at $5.6 million for a 30-second spot. With over 50 commercials expected, the league and Fox will divide up over $250 million from the proceeds.

One segment will not be a revenue generator, however, and that involves the public service spots produced by the league. The NFL has a couple of socially conscious PSAs that address some of the activist issues that have been given vocal support the past few years. Yet despite this effort, there is still pushback — the league is not involving the ‘’correct’’ spokesperson.

In the spots, the central issue concerns episodes of law enforcement having controversial involvement with the public. One PSA involving former wide receiver Anquan Boldin concerns the death of his cousin Corey Jones in Palm Beach, Florida. He was shot by a plainclothes officer at the side of the road, following his having car trouble. The other PSA centers on the case of Botham Jean. He was the Dallas resident shot in his home when police officer Amber Guyger thought he was an intruder when she says she entered the wrong apartment.

With the NFL making a direct address to the type of issues that have had players taking a more activist role the past few seasons it appears that it is still not enough. They did not involve the player considered the flashpoint of these types of stories being highlighted in activist fashion — Colin Kaepernick. It seems that doing the right thing and taking the right steps is still not enough if you do not involve the man activists insist on the league accepting.

In a piece on the videos, CNN detailed the night that Boldin was notified of his cousin passing. ”When Jones was shot, Boldin was playing in an NFL game — catching passes from former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.’’ This became the preamble to detailing how Kaepernick spearheaded much of the NFL protests for the past years.

At Yahoo Sports Shalise Manza Young wrote a lengthy column specifically taking the league to task for not involving the former 49ers quarterback. After giving the league credit for the way it was addressing the issues there was still reason to be critical. ”But here’s where my frustration, and really, my anger, persists: the NFL is doing all of this while completely ignoring the very person who sparked its sudden push for change.’’

The spots themselves bring some questions, apart from who is not involved. The accusation of these shootings displaying a racial problem is not entirely evident. The officer involved in the Jones shooting, Nouman Raja, was not white. In both instances justice, by all appearances, was served. Guyger is serving a 10-year sentence for manslaughter, while Raja was convicted for 25 years. It is difficult to see what else is being addressed by these spots as a result, apart from self-aggrandizement by the league, wanting to appear properly socially conscious. And even so, it is not coming off as proper enough.

As CNN noted, there are a number of groups who have called for boycotts of the NFL and the companies that advertise with it until Kaepernick once again works with the league. This is the same player who was recently granted a workout by most of the teams in the league and he undermined that by changing the venue and not agreeing to terms on the scheduled day. But the NFL is still expected to genuflect properly to their problematic pariah.

In the qualified praise, Manza Young still had to inject the required support. ”It will never be lost on some of us that all of this came about thanks to Kaepernick, who has been banished by the very league that now wants our kudos.’’