NEW YORK -- Former Washington Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann isn't happy with the San Francisco 49ers' decision to give Colin Kaepernick an award for being an "inspirational and courageous" player.
Kaepernick sparked a national debate by kneeling during the national anthem before games as a way of protesting racial injustice and police brutality. Last week, he received the Len Eshmont Award -- described as the team's most prestigious honor and decided upon by players.
"This award doesn't mean anything to me," Theismann said during an appearance on Fox News on Tuesday. "Inspired and courageous? You're 2-14. What did he inspire? You're [1-10] as a quarterback [this season]. What [did] you possibly inspire?
"... Everybody has the right to express their opinion, but not in the workplace."
Theismann called on the NFL to adopt a policy requiring players to stand for the anthem.
San Francisco receiver Torrey Smith took exception to Theismann's comments on Wednesday.
"Who cares what he thinks?" Torrey posted on Twitter. "Everyone from DMV knows he is one of the most arrogant people ever..his opinion has no value."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Joe Theismann slams 49ers for giving award to Colin Kaepernick