Russell Simmons supports Brandon Marshall – and there’s an endorsement deal to prove it.
Atlanta Black Star reported the Denver Broncos player lost two sponsors in three days after protesting the national anthem. Air Academy Federal Credit Union and telecommunications group CenturyLink dropped Marshall after he kneeled during the “Star Spangled Banner.”
The military-focused credit union cut ties with Marshall Sept. 9, a day after his demonstration. CenturyLink followed suit Sept. 14.
In each company’s statements, both mentioned they “respect” Marshall’s right to freedom of expression but stuck by terminating their deals.
Regardless, Simmons proposed an offer with RushCard to Marshall on Instagram Monday.
“We will find Brandon and make him an offer and make him a deal,” the Rush Communications founder vowed.
Simmons also made the invitation on his Facebook page that night.
“Brandon Marshall I’m looking for you!!” he wrote. “If they drop you then we will pick you up and I’ll give you a partnership with RushCard!! #StandUporSitDown”
And Tuesday, Simmons revealed he got in touch with Marshall and is “very optimistic” about the partnership.
He wrote in an Instagram post: “We have spoken !!!!!! now I gotta find the money. I’m very optimistic. He is a great american hero /athlete I am eternally grateful for his and other athletes courage in standing up against injustice. #standuporsitdown. #standuporsitdown #rushcard”
It should come as no surprise that Simmons is expressing support for the linebacker’s political stance. RushCard launched a video series last month focused on bringing attention to police brutality and its effect on the Black community.
“My hope is that these videos will be a starting point for a nuanced discussion about issues that affect our community and the entire country,” Simmons told Adweek at the time. “I believe in the power of art to create change, and these films use art and technology to actually show that change taking place.”
For Marshall’s part, he will continue to kneel during the national anthem. And Simmons is not the only one in his corner. Colin Kaepernick is too. The San Francisco 49er showed support for Marshall after he lost endorsements.