Music superstar Beyoncé presented NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick with the Muhammed Ali Legacy Award on Tuesday.
Photos posted on Twitter show Beyoncé making the surprise appearance to present Kaepernick with the award.
Beyonce makes a surprise appearance to present Colin Kaepernick with the Muhammed Ali Legacy Award pic.twitter.com/oQzPXFJ0cg— Luke Kerr-Dineen (@LukeKerrDineen) December 6, 2017
Colin Kaepernick received the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award. From Beyoncé. pic.twitter.com/JBMAEuitP5— Emma Span (@emmaspan) December 6, 2017
Beyoncé presents Colin Kaepernick with the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award at the Sports Illustrated Awards tonight! pic.twitter.com/U9J4gwmGdA— Philip Lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) December 6, 2017
Sports Illustrated announced Kaepernick as the recipient of the award last week.
The award is given each year to someone who "embodies the ideals of sportsmanship, leadership and philanthropy and has used sports as a platform for changing the world," the magazine said.
Sports Illustrated said Kaepernick is receiving the honor due to his "steadfastness in the fight for social justice, for his adherence to his beliefs no matter the cost."
“I am proud to be able to present this to Colin for his passionate defense of social justice and civil rights for all people,” Lonnie Ali, Muhammad Ali’s widow, said in a statement provided to the magazine.
“Like Muhammad, Colin is a man who stands on his convictions with confidence and courage, undaunted by the personal sacrifices he has had to make to have his message heard. And he has used his celebrity and philanthropy to the benefit of some of our most vulnerable community members.”
In 2016, Kaepernick became the first NFL player to kneel during the national anthem in protest of police brutality and racial injustice.
President Trump has attacked Kaepernick for kneeling, suggesting that he was still a free agent because he didn’t stand.
Trump’s comments in September, in which he attacked NFL players for kneeling and referred to them as “sons of bitches,” led to widespread protests throughout the NFL, with dozens of players kneeling as the anthem played.
Kaepernick recently filed a grievance against NFL owners, accusing them of colluding to keep him out of the league in retaliation for his outspoken views on social justice.
The NFL quarterback was also honored on Sunday with the Eason Monroe Courageous Advocate Award from the American Civil Liberties Union.