Maroon 5 Why? NFL Drops Easy Pick 6 To Reconnect With Black Fans

When it broke that Maroon 5 would be headlining the 2019 NFL Super Bowl Halftime Show, in Atlanta GA, a few thoughts crossed my mind. 

Post-Janet Jackson nip slip, the NFLs still butt fumbling on performances that openly embrace their black fans. 

Fly Eagles Fly. We need to repeat in The A.

No disrespect to P.J. Morton, but how TF is Maroon 5 your go-to option in ATLANTA, GA?

The last thought is the most brain racking. 

Unless Migos has a song with Maroon 5 (hey it could happen) and they debut it at the Super Bowl in the SuperBowl dome on the 50-yard line, this is a wasted opportunity to honor and reconnect with your African-American fanbase in a post-Colin Kaepernick League. 

Welcome To Atlanta: The Falcons, Hip-Hop And Culture

Down through the years, the mega metropolis of the South has been an eyewitness to major historical and cultural events. Among the highlights which expanded beyond the local limits: Union Gen. William Sherman setting the city on fire during his March to the Sea in 1864.

Since Colin Kaepernick was fundamentally blackballed by the NFL, both on and off the field, theres a feeling of suppression to what hes been talking about since day one on his position of police brutality. Hes been a free agent since Mar 3, 2017, and within a full calendar year, received barrages of flagrant, racist and cowardly critiques online. Youd think after Hov telling the league to shove it, by declining last years Halftime Show, and when one of your Boss Hogg owners refer to players as inmates, actively extending olive branches to a disrespected player and community would be a top priority. 

But here we are. Its a high key slap in the face to have Maroon 5 perform in the Black Mecca. Not having Usher, Lil Jon, OutKast, T.I., TLC, Gucci, Jeezy, Jermaine Dupri or Young Thug is the equivalent of dropping a pick 6 by the NFL brass. Hell Chris Bridges, aka Ludacris, redid his proven stadium anthem, Welcome To Atlanta for the Falcons this year. Mike Vick is still a king. Waka Flocka took to TMZ and expressed the disrespect for his hometown legends and history. 

Waka Flocka Flame Bashes NFL’s Maroon 5 Pick For Super Bowl Halftime Show in Atlanta | TMZ Sports

Waka Flocka Flame is throwing penalty flags at the NFL for choosing Maroon 5 for the halftime performance at this year’s Super Bowl in Atlanta, because he believes the performers should be black. SUBSCRIBE — http://po.st/TMZSportsSubscribe About TMZ Sports: Some of the best stories in sports have been off the field and we’re reporting on athletes from NFL, NBA, UFC, WWE, MLB and more!

Looking back to when Janets breast was exposed by Justin Timberlake in the 2004 Super Bowl Halftime Show, its a perfect analogy of how predominantly white institutions pilfer from Black culture and stars. Jacksons career was halted, and allegedly targeted by former CBS Chairman Les Moonves, and JTs career thrived and he became a beacon for Blue Eyed soul, this generations Elvis. 

And like Elvis, Black culture was pilfered and repurposed. Justin Timberlake rode his black infused talents to create a 2017 halftime country show. The response was lukewarm, seasonless at best.  

A few years ago, a pre-washed Katy Perry commanded her own Super Halftime Show, that is until white audiences, and Millenials, were (re)introduced to Virginias own Missy Elliott. Black Twitter was elated, while everyone else rediscovered fire. Performing a medley of Pop and Hip Hop classics, Misdemeanor ate Perrys lunch and the iTunes streams proved it. 

Katy Perry’s FULL Pepsi Super Bowl XLIX Halftime Show! | Feat. Missy Elliott & Lenny Kravitz | NFL

Check out the iconic Super Bowl 49 halftime show, starring Katy Perry! Also featuring Missy Elliott and Lenny Kravitz…and Left Shark! Songs include: Roar, Dark Horse, I Kissed a Girl (feat. Lenny Kravitz), Teenage Dream, California Gurls, Get Ur Freak On & Work It (feat. Missy Elliott), and Firework.

The armor of hesitation and willingness to play it safe is starting to crack and will result in the league being on the wrong side of history. With Nike making the choice to sign Kap to a staggering contract while funding the majority of the NFLs gear, brands are proving to be catching up with the needs of their consumers. 

Just like they want our 40 times and bench presses, the players athleticism is for sale. But the grave struggle that makes up their everyday lives arent acknowledged. And if music, like sports, is a universal language, the league is undeniably tone deaf.

Kyle Harvey is a writer, producer and the current managing editor of The Shadow League. Host of the Points On The Board podcast, and a proudly washed college athlete, Harvey had previous stints at Slant News, The Bleacher Report, NBC News, and theGrio. Originally from Wilmington, DE, Harvey graduated from North Carolina A&T State University.