For the Ravens, the process of determining how big of a distraction Colin Kaepernick would be has officially become a distraction.
In response to a report from Diana Russini of ESPN suggesting that coach John Harbaugh and G.M. Ozzie Newsome want to sign Kaepernick but that owner Steve Bisciotti is resisting the move, the team has issued a statement. The statement, however, doesn’t directly dispute the report.
“We are going through a process, and we have not made a decision,” G.M. Ozzie Newsome said in the statement. “Steve Bisciotti has not told us we cannot sign Colin Kaepernick, nor has he blocked the move. Whoever is making those claims is wrong.”
No one is making the specific claim that Bisciotti has told Harbaugh and Newsome that they can’t sign Kaepernick, or that Bisciotti otherwise blocked the move. The claim is that Bisciotti is resisting it.
The term “resistance” implies a lack of finality. The statement from Newsome expressly confirms a lack of finality.
Again, Russini was at training camp on Tuesday, and she interviewed Harbaugh on camera. She came away from the experience (and/or acquired information thereafter) that made her comfortable enough with the situation to declare, unequivocally, that Bisciotti is resisting the move. The fact that he hasn’t slammed the door doesn’t mean he’s not tapping the brakes.
A cynic may say that this entire escapade — from the leak of resistance to the statement from Newsome — is part of the broader effort to take the temperature of the fan base before making a decision. At some point, however, the Ravens need to look at the thermometer and make a diagnosis.