Richard Sherman: Kaepernick’s unemployment not about football

Getty Images

Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman thinks Colin Kaepernick’s inability to find a team is entirely about his national anthem protest.

“There was a year Matt Schaub had a pretty rough year and got signed the next year. So it has nothing to do with football,” Sherman said on ESPN. “You can see that. They signed guys who have had off years before.”

The idea that football has “nothing” to do with Kaepernick’s inability to find a job just doesn’t carry any water. If Sherman thinks Kaepernick’s unemployment is solely about the anthem protest, then how does Sherman explain the tepid interest in Kaepernick when the 49ers made him available for trade last year, before the anthem protest? Kaepernick has undeniably declined significantly as a player since he burst onto the scene as the 49ers’ starter in 2012. Over the last two seasons, Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert have shared time in San Francisco and played approximately equally well, and Gabbert hasn’t been able to find a job, either.

But it’s also undeniable that a lot of NFL owners, general managers and coaches are conservative people who disagree with Kaepernick’s protest. It’s certainly possible that some of those people would be willing to look past Kaepernick’s on-field struggles but aren’t willing to look past his anthem protest, or his off-field political advocacy.

Sherman thinks Kaepernick is still better than most starting quarterbacks in the league.

“You don’t have 32 starting-level quarterbacks in this league,” Sherman said. “You have about eight elites, and then you have the rest of the league. You have about eight, nine elite quarterbacks. You have two or three who have the potential to be elite. And then you have the rest of the teams. So he could play and start on a ton of teams in this league. He would be a starter on probably 20 of the teams in this league. But you’re telling me that you’re going to let other guys, you’re going to pick up some of these other guys and tell me that they’re starters?”

If Kaepernick were really better than 20 teams’ starting quarterbacks, it’s hard to believe not a single one of those teams would be willing to sign him. But Kaepernick is surely at least one of the 64 best quarterbacks in the NFL, which means he should at least be able to get a job as a backup. Yet he remains unemployed.

111 responses to “Richard Sherman: Kaepernick’s unemployment not about football

  1. How bout change it to….Kaep thinks he’s worth more than 2,3,4 mil a year….and so he holds out. I’m sure a handful would sign him to that number. Just like AP thinks he’s worth 7-10 and the league thinks more like 4-5….and so he holds out.

  2. In no small way does the anthem protest choose a political side and divide the fan base, no doubt. It probably does have a lot to do with him not finding a job because of all the headache which is a little unfair, I mean ultimately he’s trying to stand up for something good and he’s actually doing what most people who complain about protestors say protestors should do. He’s peacefully and quietly making a point. Which tells you a little something about their actual motivation for critiquing but I digress.

    Moving away from that side of things, CK isn’t the most coachable QB, I mean he hasn’t grown a bit as a QB since being in the league. He doesn’t go through his reads like a normal QB, his instincts are usually to tuck and run after the first read doesn’t pan out. Cam, for all the criticism he takes, actually goes through his read and adjusts to defenses and is usually pretty stingy with the ball. If CK wants another starting QB job he’s going to have to take a backseat to a QB and take to coaching and grow his game for a year or two, it is what it is.

  3. 1) he wants too much money 2) he’s a malcontent 3) he’s not very good

    Take away any one of the three things above and he’s on a team. Teams will put up with a malcontent that’s not very good if he’s cheap. Likewise they’ll pay good money to a malcontent if he’s good. But Kaep has the Jeff George trifecta going for him… he’s not getting employed until one of those three things changes.

    Keep in mind this is probably more than the kneeling. The man wore a Fidel Castro shirt then somehow tried to rationalize that Cuba has it better than here. The kneeling is indicative of a greater problem.

  4. Didn’t he decline a $15 mil dollar option? Ouch… Bad tactical decision by him and his agent. Why I do agree that people are tired of his antics at the same point do you think this guy will sign a contract for his true value as a backup? Same thing is happening to cutler. I’ll bet he’ll find a job if he’s willing to pay for 3 mil a season

  5. i’m sure at least 5 teams would get better QB play with Kap. The problem is that it wouldn’t be that much better and you have to make a special offense for him. He’s not a long term answer so who wants to setup a gimmick offense for a bridge quarterback? Really bad teams need to find a QB of the future and get him reps and really good teams will have an offense he can’t run.

  6. I hope that Sherman is correct. Kaepernick’s anti-American stance was an embarassment to the NFL and the entire country. Blackballing him is appropriate.

  7. Sherman is about to have the same fate as his skills are beginning to wane, while his horse mouth certainly is not.

  8. The police pig socks didn’t help either, so it’s not just the anthem. It’s also not just Kaepernick and let’s not pretend that it is. Kaepernick may have alienated conservative owners, but Tom Brady alienated the liberal media to a point where it became a distraction. There are two differences here. One is how each handled the situation. Brady never wanted to become a distraction and really backed off. The other is that Tom Brady wins.

  9. How about rewording that to ” more physical ability” than 20 other qb’s…

    Kap is dumb…Where Brady takes .6 seconds to dissect defense, Kap takes 4 seconds.

    Sure, Kap has more physical talent than say a Russell Wilson….He’s not anywhere near better.

    In other words…lights are on, but no one is home…Not much different for RG 3

    Go to Canada, straighten yourself out.

  10. Sherman is correct that if it was about football alone then Kaepernick would be playing. The fact that he is not good for business and also has the potential for causing distractions for the team outweighs the talent level that he has to offer. Any business owner does NOT want to sabotage their business– in fact, it would be irresponsible to do so.

  11. Let’s count the reasons why Kaep is out of the league right now:

    1. Does not read the field at all and is often late on throws which ruins plays designed on timing. Cannot identify the best throw. Hell, he could not identify an uncovered receiver at the line of scrimmage two seasons ago — unforgivable.
    2. His successful years were with him running the ball which exposes him to hits. His vegan lifestyle has left him underweight and this creates an injury fear among coaches. No one wants to run him.
    3. No touch on the ball. He cannot run the screen game effectively.
    4. Has limited accuracy which affects ability to sustain drives.
    5. Needs to play out of the gun to hel his reads. Cannot consistently play well from under center. This means teams considering him as a backup must alter their offense to get the best from him. His uniqueness hurts him for a role where teams would like his play to be more similar to the starter, so the rest of the offense can play one style.
    6. Yes, his views have not helped him. I applaud his charity.

  12. Richard, you really starting to put that Stanford Education to work. No Owner wants any ‘public” political stands from players while they are ON THE FIELD. That detract from the brand, alienates the fan base, and damages the advertising.

    Kap acted which was his right and the fallout is reciprocal. There is no difference.

    From a man who’s father and many friends died serving the nation, Kap disrespected them.

  13. There is no doubt that Kap is way better than some of the guys getting signed, so it obviously (mostly) isn’t about football.

    I mean….Mark Sanchez just found employment. Brock Osweiler still has a job. Geno Smith. The list goes on.

    No, he isn’t a great player and I don’t like what he did but seriously….how have the Jets not signed this guy already?

  14. He’s right. Kaep wanted attention last year, while being paid, and got it. But now unemployed, he’ll stand for the anthem? His ‘protest’ had no merit or value. There is no way in less than 1 year, all of the changes he was ‘protesting’ against were reconciled. It was a complete & utter ‘look at me’ not ‘I really believe in a cause’ moment. And the owners don’t need his attitude.

    Remember Ali didn’t change his stance after being stripped of the heavyweight title. That’s conviction. Big difference.

  15. We live in a country where we have freedom of speech and expression. That being said there are consequences to what you say and do. Ray Rice also is unemployed and wouldn’t be (a couple years ago) had it not been for a video. Kaepernick’s political stance was highly unpopular and an owner and teams probably don’t want to face backlash from their fans over a backup QB.

  16. Was Kaepernick actually that bad last year? While stats aren’t everything, he threw 16 TDs against only 4 picks, and his yards per carry were higher than they’ve ever been. Yards per attempt and completion percentage weren’t so great, I’ll grant that, but the 49ers weren’t exactly sending Moss, Carter and Reed out there at wideout, were they?

  17. Can Sherman stop offering his opinion to the masses already. Everyday people don’t really care about any celebrity/athlete opinion(s).

    Kaepernick made his bed, through both his play and his protests. Why, Mr. Sherman, should he be an exception to the axiom that actions have consequences? How is he so special?

    Next time also, if you are going to level the claim, say what you are inferring. If you are going to play the race card, at least own up to it. Jeez.

  18. I believe we should get Rickie Shermans opinion on everything, because he apparently believes that also.

  19. Good grief. If this guy never plays again he is already richer than just about anyone who will ever live. Lets talk about football.

  20. It’s mostly about football, you’re not a coach, this man is not a pocket passer like Cam Newton has developed himself into. And even if it’s about Kaepernick not respecting the flag-so what!!

  21. Neither is Tebow’s! Tebow went 8-5 with a playoff win before being blackballed for his proselytizing Christianity! NFL without Tebow = Netanyahu Football League!

  22. Richard, do you mean to tell me a way a person acts has something to do with where and how he is employed? Welcome to the real world Richard.

    On top of the spoiled brat routine we watched last year he absolutely looked like he had no interest in team or ball. Why don’t the Seahawks bring him in to your locker room? Maybe your locker room could use that type of player and teammate.

    Someone wrap Richard up in a blanket and rock him to sleep

  23. Kaepernick brought this all on himself. By thinking he is better than he is and by choosing to disrespect our National Anthem and flag, he put himself in this situation. The only thing which rubbed off from Harbaugh on Kaepernick is his arrogance.

    I will never, ever watch any game that he is a part of. I don’t care who signs him. I can’t even stand looking at him.

    As for Richard Sherman, I don’t understand why the media runs to get his opinion on everything. He is an over-rated DB and a big mouth.
    Unfortunately, he’ll be all over the tv when he retires just like other big mouths such as Michael Irvin. The sports networks just love hiring big mouth punks like these guys. Case in point — they just hired Rex Ryan, a loser as head coach in two cities with a big mouth.

  24. Nobody wants the distraction. They don’t need a circus. For a 2nd or 3rd string QB.

    It’s just not worth the investment…

    And Kap caused these problems himself…

  25. Its his poor playing and regression thats hurting him not the protest. If he had any decent qb skills teams would have put aside the rest and grabbed him. The qb market is too lean for anything otherwise. Sherman usually has to play on Sundays so he can be forgiven that he has apparently not been able to watch the games.

  26. It certainly looks like he and his agent badly misjudged when they declined the big $$ option. ——————————————————————————————————
    With his on field distractions aside, if he were the 15th rated QB & not the 30th he’d had multiple offers already.

  27. I bet he would still be really good if Jim Harbaugh was his coach in SF as those two had a great chemistry and JH made him the qb he used to be.of course if JH was his coach he wouldnt have had the guts to protest the flag by sitting.

  28. I wouldn’t hire him… his play has declined and he insulted about 70-80% of America

    just not worth the hassle

  29. I think Kaepernick is right to stand for the anthem since race relations have improved dramatically since DJT was sworn in. Before Trump was President all you saw in the media was police shootings of innocent unarmed black men. Since Trump became President I have not seen one media story about this. So because of Trump and a lesser extent Kaps protest of the National Anthem, racial problems have been solved. Thank you Colin Kaepernick and President Trump for your efforts in furthering race relation in the USA. America is getting greater again each day.

  30. He was a gimmick that got figured out by NFL teams and he let his America-hating girlfriend brainwash him. That is all.

  31. theres gotta be something else to talk about. please? anything else nfl but this.

  32. Ok so your a GM and you need a back up QB which lets face it that’s what Kaep is. Do you want to sign a cop hating, country disrespecting, can’t keep his weight on, questionable devotion to football, distraction or a guy who you’ll never know is there unless your starter gets hurt?

  33. Of course, it’s not about football and don’t let anybody try to tell you that it is, with a straight face. If Mark Sanchez is still in the league and Jake Mckown or whatever his last name is, continues to get starting jobs and starter money in this league, along with Christian Ponder hanging around for who knows what?

    What has Mike Glennon ever accomplished for him to have been so sought after in FA?

    At least Colin Kaepernick can say he was the starting quarterback in the super bowl and was a pretty good quarterback until Harbaugh left. Say what you want, Kap is still better than at least half the starting QB’s in this league.

    Come on, grow up, this ain’t about football!

  34. footballisnotthatimportant says:
    Mar 25, 2017 6:47 AM
    There is no doubt that Kap is way better than some of the guys getting signed, so it obviously (mostly) isn’t about football.

    I mean….Mark Sanchez just found employment. Brock Osweiler still has a job. Geno Smith. The list goes on.

    No, he isn’t a great player and I don’t like what he did but seriously….how have the Jets not signed this guy already?

    Sanchez signed a deal for $2M per year. Will Kaep take that deal?

  35. Remember the Vicky Mendoza line on the crazy / hot scale from How I Met Your Mother? That’s how life works in almost every facet.

    You just aren’t that good that you can bring that much baggage and distraction dude. It’s not a race thing, its a moron thing. Gotta be smarter than that.

  36. Kaepernick’s career QB rating is better than Carson Palmer’s. His “total QBR” was better in 2016 than Ryan Tannehill, Cam Newton, Carson Wentz, Eli Manning and Blake Bortles, all of whom will be starting for certain in 2017. He would easily be one of the best rushing QBs of all time if given the opportunity (he may be in the top 10, but finding updated rankings proved impossible). He was pretty close to winning a SB against the Ravens (and a not-quite-on-the-money pass to Crabtree away from getting there 2x). There’s a good ten teams in the league that would get better QB play from Kaepernick than their current starter, and more with an aging QB and no future plan (Giants, Chargers). If anyone believes that his political stance – and the way it diverts from the political stances of virtually every NFL owner – is not the reason he’s currently unemployed, it’s because they’re not paying attention.

  37. Greg Hardy can play at a high level but teams are leery of him because of his past actions baggage.

    And yet you don’t hear liberal media or players taking up for him.

  38. Didn’t Sherm get a 900 on his SAT? That is disgraceful and nowhere near good enough for even an average state college. Pathetic

  39. If he played like ‘approximately equally well’ as Aaron Rodgers he could club baby seals on live TV and teams would beat a path to his door. But no player can play like Blaine Gabbert AND be a divisive figure then have teams line up for him.

    BTW, Jay Cutler has a career history that shows he is much better than Gabbert, didn’t protest anything and last anyone knew there weren’t 22 teams pursuing him.

  40. It’s a pretty sad state of affairs when showing respect to your country is considered a partisan issue.

  41. No one wanted to trade for Mike Glennon either, and he got $15m.

    It is 100% about the anthem, and rightfully so.

    He can go play in Canada and take a knee during their anthem. Traitor.

  42. Kap has the right to kneel during the National Anthem, while wearing anti-cop socks.

    The owners have the right to avoid the PR nightmare that comes with a player that knelt during the National Anthem, while wearing anti-cop socks.

    I can “speculate” that local cops have informed their local team that they would not work the stadium if Kap is in the building. I support that position 100%.

    Kap reaps what he sews – and has nobody to blame but himself. His white mom even disagrees with him…

  43. crappygovernment says:
    Mar 25, 2017 8:31 AM
    Neither is Tebow’s! Tebow went 8-5 with a playoff win before being blackballed for his proselytizing Christianity! NFL without Tebow = Netanyahu Football League!
    Tebow can’t throw and what the NFL has to do with the prime minister of Israel is a secret known only to you. Kaepernick, on his worst day, is a better NFL quarterback than Tebow.

  44. As a side note – how good of a coach is Jim Haubaugh to make Kap look like superman?

    Without JH, the entire team immediately sucked.

    Who says NFL coaching doesn’t matter…

  45. Kaepernick and Gabbert played equally, lol? Okay, way to spin a narrative. Fact is that one guy has a before and after profile of himself with that franchise when Harbaugh was there and then when York sabotaged the team, and the other guy has been a joke since he got drafted. If QBs are as scarce as everyone agrees they are, he should get another shot without people bringing politics into the equation, especially considering that he was peacefully protesting and that considering we have a stone cold traitor in the White House right now, more people might want to join in on that stance.

  46. His talent is not worth the distraction at this point. It’s not just about him not standing for the anthem it’s how he did it. Wearing those socks and not actually being educated on the events he was protesting really angered some people. And on top of all of that he thinks he is worth more than he is. If he hadn’t fallen off a cliff with his play after Harbaugh left he would be on a team. let this be a lesson to everyone. You have freedom of speech but no control of how people react to it.

  47. Oh, come on. The NFL employs all kinds of dirty players, including players with criminal records and known troublemakers in the locker room and on the field. If you can help a team win, you’re collecting a paycheck. This is about football. Period.

  48. Yes it is he sucks. He also tried to make himself bigger than the game he gets paid to play ball he doesn’t get paid to give his opinion and that goes for everyone else in the NFL take this as a lesson Shut up and play ball and it will work out great for you point blank

  49. Billionaires don’t typically want people that look like bozo the clown being the face of their franchises. Try getting a haircut and looking half respectable. That could be a step in the right direction maybe

  50. In no way shape or form do I want or care about your opinion on why kaepernick is still unemployed. Maybe athletes need to learn a lesson that you can’t just do whatever the hell you want without repercussions

  51. I have followed Kap since he was in college but he fu*ked by not standing he disgraced everybody who died for this country now he is out of a job and is kissing everyones ass sorry Kap tolate best job you will find will be at the one company that will welcome you STARBUCKD

  52. If he states he will play for the vet minimum and be a back up and doesn’t get a job….then it will be obvious he is being blackballed….Honestly how many backup QBs in the league would have a better chance of winning a game for their team vs. kaepernick

  53. Kap knew this could happen when he did his protest, so there’s no reason for anybody to be upset about it. Its his fault and he’s paying consequences for it.

  54. NFL exists at the discretion of US Congress.
    Blackballing is crime by federal labor laws.
    This is more than a matter of opinions.

  55. This is a high stakes business, if his talent-to-PITA ratio was higher he’d have a job, period. If the NFL has proven anything, and I agree 100%, is that winning come first, no matter what. My moral compass dos not come from athletes or celebrities, LOL…

  56. without the game of football Kap is a nothing. He disrespected the game, the country and all who believe in it. now he has all the time he needs to fix the ills of society that he protests. BTW, the sell out already told teams he would stand during the anthem so it’s not an issue.

  57. Krapernick is trash. All his stats came in the first half of games. He disappears in the 3rd and 4th q. His qbr and td/int are a joke . Most fans just see his stats and think he’s great. Look a little deeper and you’ll see his stats are meaningless 1st and 2nd quarter stats while choking in the 3rd and 4th q. of every game for a rec of 1-11. I’m a niners fan. I watch every game. Don’t let his stats confuse you. He can’t finish a game strong. He always chokes. So glad he’s gone. Overhyped backup.

  58. Kaepernick shouldn’t have said ANYTHING about standing for the anthem now that he is looking for a job – he shouldn’t have brought it up at all.
    As a 20 year retired and disabled vet, nope, I don’t appreciate his stance on the anthem – however – I respect that he has the right to not stand. Now that he says he will stand for the anthem he is essentially saying that he will do anything for a buck and his values have no meaning.
    If he was a great QB – a team would still take him – but combining all his drama and his “meh” play… it’s just too much.

  59. Kap is too stupid to be a QB in the NFL. He is a dummy who can’t read defenses. AND he is a racist who spit on the flag. Who spit on all the men who died fighting for this country. Being able to earn millions in the NFL isn’t a right, it is a privilege . People like Sherman, Michael Bennett, Kap, they all see everything in life through the prism of race. they are all racists . Anything that goes wrong for blacks, people like Sherman will blame it on race, rather than Taking responsibility for their stupid actions.

  60. Kneeling, pig socks, Castro shirts, all are his rights. We hear it all the time, “I know my rights “. People need to read up on the responsibilities that come with those rights as well as the rights of others to view you accordingly.

  61. He isn’t any good anymore, stop making this into some social experiment. If this guy had Tom Brady skills would he be on a team right now? YES HE WOULD

  62. Teams’ capacity to put up with you correlates directly with how good you are. Had he lead them to a 13 win season as a Pro Bowler, he’d go from pariah to icon. Problem is, Kap just keeps getting worse. The league figured him out, and he had no counter move for that.

    If this dude wasn’t the Benjamin Button of QB’s, he’d have a job right now.

  63. Even if it isn’t about football, who cares? At the end of the day, you make your bed and you lie in it. If he truly was standing up for something he believes strongly in (no pun intended), then he had to be prepared for the possible consequences. He is not owed a career in the NFL.

  64. PEDs might’ve had something to do with it too. He was terrible after he stopped taking them.

  65. He put himself in the spotlight last year and is paying for it this year. Same team owners this year as last so he made his point very well.

  66. None of us have a clue as to the conversations behind closed doors in these organizations, that being said, however, it is strange that in this era of leaked info and 24 second news cycles that there is not even one mention of him receiving even a back up offer or even communicating with any team. Regardless of your political views or how you view Kaepernick, it should alarm everyone that believes in freedom and the inalienable rights of all (including the right to protest), to be trampled on because of exercising that right.

  67. I think they all need a school trip to Syria. If you want some real oppression. Play for the Syrian soccer team then sit for the anthem. Watch what happens.

  68. Funny that Liberals can Protest with Violence, Hate, Verbal Abuse, and Destruction, but Conservatives Can’t.

    Kaepernick Used the Wrong Platform to Protest, that’s the problem I have with him. You can’t pick and choose a particular issues using the Flag to protest. I have a number of issues with the past 8 years with our government but I would never disrespect the Flag because of it.

    People have a right to protest but Business owners have a right to choose who they hire and I certainly would not want to hire someone who protested on the job. That being said I wasn’t happy with the NFL for letting that go on.

  69. Does anyone really care? Otherwise NFL causes like Michael Sam, Joni Martin might still be around. In the end, the NFL world business and public…Have short attention spans and will be forgotten sooner rather than later. Kaep will be the latest to experience this simple phenomenon.

  70. It certainly has a lot to do with the business of football as opposed to Kaepernick’s specific skill set as a football player. But not entirely.

    Kaep’s abilities have been declining for several years as opposing teams break down his film and make adjustments. It also seems as though his veganism has separately negatively impacted his play. And any growth potential that Harbough mentioned requires a long term commitment that teams aren’t willing to make.

    With all of the above, a potential owner would have to be convinced that improvements can be made and are worth the effort. I think most teams aren’t certain that improvements are certain. And the few that might believe so have just decided that it’s not worth the risk.

    His choice was made. Now owners get to make their choice as well.

  71. Ironically, one of the only teams Kap could play for is the Seahawks, whom Sherman isn’t ripping here.

    “Hey Richard, why doesn’t your team sign him?”

    “Oh, we’ve already got a quarterback.”

    “We do too.”

    “But your guy sucks!”

    “So does Kaepernick. But we won’t have to waste time on teaching our guy how to suck.”

  72. Who really gives a crap what this pile of nothing says….. He’s nothing but a loser who more than likely has played his last game in the NFL ….. A excellent case of
    “Letting ones mouth overload his pea-sized brain”….

  73. Richard Sherman- can’t…..resist…..urge…to play the race card….must resis…ah hell with it.

    Kaep voided his own contract that would have paid him 16.5. Losers who cry that he’s “at least a top 64 QB” can keep whining. Kaep is looking for starter money, so the question isn’t whether a team is willing to sign him as a low end back up, it’s whether a team is willing to sign him as a low end starter, which is what he’s looking for.

    But never miss an opportunity to b1tch and whine. Richard Sherman’s motto.

  74. Richard Sherman needs to learn facts and also when to shut up. He treats Kaepernick’s selfish anthem protest as something to be proud of instead of what it is – hate. He also is in denial of Kaepernick’s irrelevance as a player.

  75. If the guy could play he’d have a job.

    If the guy was patriotic he’d have a job.

    He can’t and he’s not.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.