Next week, EA Sports is releasing Madden NFL 19, the latest iteration of the extremely popular sports video game series based on the National Football League. These games typically contain a lot of popular music. In the latest edition of the game, YG’s “Big Bank” — which features verses from 2 Chainz, Big Sean, and Nicki Minaj — is featured.
According to a select few who have access to the game early (via TMZ), a reference to Colin Kaepernick is censored from Big Sean’s verse on the song. The line, which originally went “Feed me to the wolves now I lead the pack and shit/ You boys all cap, I’m more Colin Kaepernick” now omits his name entirely, along with the profanity in it.
Kaepernick is, of course, embroiled in controversy with the NFL over his 2016 national anthem protest. Last fall, he filed a grievance against the organization, saying that NFL owners were colluding to not employ him on a team.
As NBC points out, his name was also censored in a song on last year’s Madden 18, even though his likeness appeared in the game.
— Mr. Changing Lives (@jeanclervil) August 2, 2018
UPDATE: Electronic Arts has issued an apology and promises the line will be reinstated.
“We made an unfortunate mistake with our Madden NFL soundtrack. Members of our team misunderstood the fact that while we don’t have rights to include Colin Kaepernick in the game, this doesn’t affect soundtracks. We messed up, and the edit should never have happened. We will make it right, with an update to Madden NFL 19 on August 6 that will include the reference again. We meant no disrespect, and we apologize to Colin, to YG and Big Sean, to the NFL, to all of their fans and our players for this mistake.”
Big Sean also chimed in to voice his disapproval:
It’s disappointing and appalling @NFL & @EA took @Kaepernick7’s name out of my verse on Big Bank for Madden 19, like it was a curse word. When he's not a curse, he's a gift! Nobody from my team approved any of this.
— Sean Don (@BigSean) August 2, 2018