Owners, not coaches, should be asked about Colin Kaepernick

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Once it became obvious that there currently aren’t enough good quarterbacks to go around (there are barely enough bad ones), Colin Kaepernick launched one of his most public efforts yet to get back to the NFL.

Through a series of workouts in the backyards of NFL teams, Kaepernick has gotten his name back in the news. Seahawks coach Pete Carroll has been asked on multiple occasions about Kaepernick’s potential return. Last week, it came up during the press conference regarding the Russell Wilson trade. This week, it came up during an interview with Dave “Softy” Mahler and Dick Fain on KJR radio in Seattle.

“We’re watching him,” Carroll said as to Kaepernick. “He’s been working out, doing a lot of good things, trying to get prepared for an opportunity here. It’s amazing that he’s stayed with it for all these years. It just shows you his resolve to try and prove that he can play. I think a lot of the effort that he’s made to this point.”

If they’re watching him from afar, why not bring him in for a workout and watch him more directly? That’s a question that should be addressed not to a coach, but to an owner.

Any flirtation with Kaepernick will result in an immediate backlash from a portion of the fanbase that hates Kaepernick for kneeling during the national anthem. As the first to do it, he became the player most plainly attached to a practice that became widespread and controversial.

He became a free agent five years ago. No one wanted him. Bogus storylines were fed to reporters (who relayed them to their audiences) to justify not doing business with him. Eventually, he filed a collusion grievance. It settled in early 2019 for an amount widely believed to land between $5 million and $10 million.

In other words, he was right.

Since then, there has been intermittent optimism that Kaepernick will get another opportunity. A window seemed to open following the May 2020 killing of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis, causing many to admit the connection between that incident and the concerns previously raised by Kaepernick in explaining his decision to protest during the anthem.

At some point (possibly from the get-go), Kaepernick’s unemployment became about not his skills but the impact of doing business with him on a team’s broader business interests. Nearly five years ago, Giants co-owner John Mara admitted that teams don’t want to anger customers by signing Kaepernick.

“All my years being in the league, I never received more emotional mail from people than I did about that issue,” Mara said. “If any of your players ever do that, we are never coming to another Giants game. It wasn’t one or two letters. It was a lot. It’s an emotional, emotional issue for a lot of people, moreso than any other issue I’ve run into.”

Now that the league has moved past the short-time ratings dip that happened when certain politicians seized on the subject in 2016 and 2017, no owner is willing to stir up a hibernating hornets’ nest for a backup-at-best-caliber quarterback who may be good enough to win a roster spot and eventually (potentially) the starting job.

Right or wrong (the fact that Kaepernick violated no laws or league rules should help you resolve that one), teams don’t want the headache, the criticism, the potential impact to the bottom line for associating with someone who has been engaged in unpopular conduct. Of course, this is all happening at a time when the Browns shipped multiple first-round picks, multiple second-round picks, and more to Houston for a quarterback who promptly received a five-year, fully-guaranteed contract worth $230 million — despite 22 pending civil cases alleging sexual misconduct during massage sessions and the looming possibility of criminal charges.

Some would call the ongoing shunning of Kaepernick good business. Others would call it the absence of moral or financial courage by NFL ownership. Whatever the explanation for the fact that Drew Lock, Davis Mills, Marcus Mariota, and Mitch Trubisky currently have positions atop depth charts while Kapernick can’t even get an in-person tryout, it should be coming not from the coaches of the league’s teams but from the owners.

Coincidentally, the owners will be gathering next week in Florida. Maybe one or more of them will be asked about it.

99 responses to “Owners, not coaches, should be asked about Colin Kaepernick

  1. Kaepernick refuses to compete for a starting job. He wants someone to give him QB1 with a QB1 contract after ending his own deal with San Fransisco.

  2. What’s the point? They’ll just say that they leave personnel decisions to the front office, and that they fully trust and support their GM to make decisions that are in the best interest of the team.

  3. The juice isn’t worth the squeeze. Plain and simple. His noodle arm isn’t going to help any team win games.

  4. Kap is back trying out for the NFL because his 15 minutes of fame as a martyr has run out. There is no other reason.

  5. Are we really going to the light this all again? If Kaep was good enough to help a team then he would have a job already. It’s really that simple.

  6. When will this stop . A QB in Kaepernick who lost his job to Blaine Gabbert prior to any of his Social Justice stances. He will not be a better QB 5 years later. He’s done and was done 5 years ago.

  7. CK disrespected our brave men and women of law enforcement and our cuban-american friends. Why would any owner need to speak about or to CK?

  8. Give it up – Kaepernick has. He CHOSE NOT to play in the league WHEN HE HAD A CONTRACT and then CHOSE not to accept contracts offerred him. HE IS NOT A VOCTIM OF ANYTHING other than his own ego.

  9. Colin Kaepernick, not owners, should be asked about Colin Kaepernick! Im going to take a knee and listen to answers now.

  10. The decision can be both good business and the absence of moral and financial courage.

    Having said that, the ability to kneel and disrespect the anthem is one of the defining things an American can do. One of the most important things I learned in the Navy came from a Master Chief explaining to me that disrespecting the country and the flag is a major reason we are such a great country. We’re not bound by kowtowing to authority or tradition or how things are. The flag, the anthem, and the other symbols of America aren’t objects to be venerated. They’re symbols of the courage we show in always facing the truth. Men don’t die for a flag. They die for an idea, and that idea says it’s fine to kneel when listening to an anthem. Freedom isn’t always what you think it should be. That’s why it’s so hard to find and so important to defend.

    It’s too bad more people don’t understand that freedom under one’s own terms isn’t real freedom.

  11. Kaepernick was an average QB at best. He really shouldn’t want back in the league. He would ruin the myth he was good by halftime of week 1

  12. 1 – You don’t nag the Owners or Coaches. You nag the GMs since they’re responsible for the roster. Unless you’re talking about Jerrah.
    2 – Paying Kap didn’t mean he was right. It meant that paying him was a better business decision.

  13. People like a 2nd chance story… It could even be Kaep’s story..
    3 easy steps:

    1)admit he was wrong
    2)offer public apology
    3)commit to raise money for local police wherever he signs to play…

  14. Why doesn’t Kaepernick answer the question of…..”Why won’t you sign for the veteran minimum and complete for a QB job?” “How come every time you get close to stepping back in the field….something happens?”

    Kaepernick actually owes us all some answers instead of merely sending out workout videos with claims of being int he best shape of his life. What’s the purpose of those videos if he won’t take a backup opportunity at veteran’s minimum?

  15. Political activism while working for a private interest tends to get one fired. There is no “exercising his free speech rights” here as that only applies to protection from being censured by the government. A private business like the NFL is not the government. Stop using that argument: it is invalid. CK is simply among the list of quarterbacks who aren’t good enough. That is all.

  16. chickensalad43 says:
    March 24, 2022 at 1:45 pm
    Kap is back trying out for the NFL because his 15 minutes of fame as a martyr has run out. There is no other reason.

    This comment is 100% spot on!! Can’t make anymore money playing the martyr .. and NO the owners shouldn’t pander to the woke mob

  17. Settling a lawsuit does not say Kaepernick was right. Sometimes it’s cheaper to settle than a long drawn out suit. With the high price lawyers the NFL uses I’m sure it wouldn’t take long to burn through $5M to $10M.

  18. It’s a business. It’s perfectly legitimate for an owner to not want to anger his customers. Nothing wrong with that. What other business allows their employees to insult their customers?

  19. I feel like John Candy’s character in Blues Brothers. All this drama surrounding Kaep. I just want to see if the guy can still play.

  20. And frogs not birds should have wings 🤷‍♂️ let’s get back to tall about football and players who are or have a chance to become relevant because of their play.

  21. I’ll never understand why people are still banging the table for an almost 35 year old QB, with a 58% career completion percentage, who relied on his legs more than his arm. It’s over. Let it go.

  22. Imagine feeling sympathetic towards a grown multi-millionaire because no one wants to pay him to play his favorite game.

    The denial and copium through the roof with all the mental gymnastics needed for anyone to convince themselves this is an organized effort to keep him out. Simply no one wants him, including me.

    Let it go. It’s over.

  23. If he was any good a team would want him. Deshawn Watson just got traded for a boatload of picks. Fact is he is not a good qb. Teams will deal with baggage if you are good.

  24. In his last two years of play, Kaepernick was no better, or maybe worse than, Drew Lock, Davis Mills, Marcus Mariota, and Mitch Trubisky. From a coach’s standpoint, that’s the last reference point for comparison.

    From a GM’s perspective, that only becomes worthwhile if the prospect of his much higher ceiling is a good value – which would require Kaepernick to accept a low-cost prove-it contract with no promise of starting.

    The above two factors alone would be a significant hurdle for any player on paper, so for there to still be a conversation at all is a bit exceptional.

    From an owner’s point of view, it’s a much bigger picture of cost vs. benefit. Many teams would have significant numbers of fans who irrationally hold on to disproportionate hatred for Kaepernick – is it an owner’s job to disregard that, even if it’s wrong from a rational standpoint?

    All that said, I can’t think of why Seattle wouldn’t give him a shot. Their market would embrace him, they have no QB1 to displace, it’s a perfect team to find out whether he has anything left. Unless they’re already working on a different plan, they have nothing at all to lose.

  25. Facts, the guy had one, one decent season. He got lucky because no one really knew his game was run and pass. After that, the D’s were ready and his game went in the tank. The real Kap turned out to be a flop. The only one who thinks he is any good is himself.

  26. Whatever the explanation for the fact that Drew Lock, Davis Mills, Marcus Mariota, and Mitch Trubisky currently have positions atop depth charts while Kapernick can’t even get an in-person tryout,
    —————————-
    These QB’s ARE better choices than Kap.

    Kap was offered an in person tryout a few years ago, and made a Circus of it. Why would ANY team put themselves in that position again?

  27. tyelee says:
    March 24, 2022 at 1:58 pm
    People like a 2nd chance story… It could even be Kaep’s story..
    3 easy steps:

    1)admit he was wrong
    2)offer public apology
    3)commit to raise money for local police wherever he signs to play

    ——

    How would those three things halo his skill set and teach him to read a defense?

  28. EVERYBODY seems to forget after the league changed the rule about hitting a running QB he flat out sucked. Defensive coordinators found out he cant throw and took away the run and he was toast. They also seem to forget his last 2 seasons (19) starts. Completion % of 59% (below average), 22TD 9 Int(nothing special),QB rating of 84 (Sean Mannion played one game for the Vikings last season and threw for 189 yards, 1 TD and completed 61.1% of passes, he had a rating of 84 to put things in perspective),he was sacked 64 times had 14 fumbles in 19 games(not good) and was 3-16 he also has the dubious distinction of being the only QB in NFL history with more sack yards lost than passing yards in a game. He may be in great shape and can throw a ball to his buddies but does anyone really believe all this time off has made him a better QB because he wasnt good at the time he started kneeling. They should not be talking to the coaches nor the owners, this guy isnt that good. Why would any team want a below average QB that will bring a media circus to your team on their roster ?

  29. He hijacked a staged paid for private owners and audience to enhance his believe was nothing more than showing off.
    I would believe him if he continue to kneel in public to protest after his playing days. Too bad he did not

  30. And if any owners are asked about him, I’m sure an honest response would be “Kaepernick who”? How about we let sleeping dogs lie…

  31. Drew Lock, Davis Mills, Marcus Mariota, and Mitch Trubisky are all better today than Kaep was in his last games. Now, several YEARS later, the media is treating Kaep like he’s still in his prime as if it’s just a lack of opportunities keeping him out of the league. News flash: two things can be true. The collusion to keep him out AND Kaep’s dropoff in play. We can debate all day which came first, but that’s actually beside the point. From a football standpoint, Kaep missed his shot in this league. You can (and likely will) keep talking ad nauseum about how “unfair” it’s all been on the guy but his football skills today don’t matchup with those of the QBs listed. Drew Lock, Davis Mills, Marcus Mariota, and Mitch Trubisky all have more recent experience and are all at or above the stat level of where Kaep was in his last actual game(s) action.

  32. He lost his job to Blaine Freaking Gabbert aka one of the statistically worst QBs in NFL history 6 years ago. He turned down several offers to be a backup QB because it was beneath him and no-Showed a NFL tryout specifically made for him. Hes 34 and hasnt done anything basically since 2014. But I hope my team takes him anyways just so we can get the number 1 pick in 2023.

  33. Any competent owner will know that brining in Kaepernick will result in a net loss of incoming revenue.

  34. Cap is an opportunist. He’s made himself into a civil rights hero, but he literally refuses to vote! He keeps this myth with non-football fans that he was a great player being denied because of his political beliefs, but we all know that he was a gimmick Tim Tebow like QB who isn’t a starter!

  35. Kaepernick lost his job to Blaine Gabbert. As in career bust Blaine Gabbert. End of story.

  36. Bottom line – no one is owed an NFL job. He has had opportunities – and he (or in one case his girlfriend with her tweet calling out the Ravens owner as racist) blew them. He had an opportunity to do a group workout and he decided not to participate. he was offered opportunities to play in other leagues – and turned them down. Frankly, who cares at this point. I believe that if any NFL team felt he was a difference maker, they would have signed him in a heartbeat.

  37. It really has more to do with how terrible a player he is than his politics.

  38. 1. Kap had a golden opportunity to play for the Ravens only to have his girlfriend post that dumb picture which made everything fall through.

    2. He scheduled a workout in Atlanta only to change the location an hour before.

    3. His QBR has never been above 71.0 and his career completion percentage is 59.8%

    4. NFL teams are looking for a LEADER at QB not someone self centered and constantly being a distraction

  39. PLEASE LET IT REST! This guy had his opportunity and decided to take a stand against things he STILL can’t explain. He did nothing to backup his “stance” and has been out of football for five years or so. It’s time to move on.

  40. Kaepernick quit
    Kaepernick refused to attend a tryout set up for him by the NFL
    Kaepernick wasn’t that good to begin with
    Kaepernick’s workout videos bring to mind Uncle Rico’s videos in Napolean Dynamite.

  41. Colin Kaepernick and Lebron James have each destroyed their respective leagues.

    Only difference is Lebron actually has talent and is elite at his sport.

    Colin Kaepernick was never good enough to compete in the NFL. The fact that we are STILL talking about Colin Kaepernick is absolutely ridiculous.

  42. Five years out of the league for a 34 year-old QB that wasn’t very good to begin with, and somebody is supposed to offer a contract?? I think not.

    Mara was correct then and correct today. The guy is poison, and will assure the destruction of any franchise that signs him (except perhaps Seattle, which says enough right there). Fans will not tolerate it.

    Live with your decision Colin.

  43. “Whatever the explanation for the fact that Drew Lock, Davis Mills, Marcus Mariota, and Mitch Trubisky currently have positions atop depth charts while Kaepernick can’t even get an in-person tryout, it should be coming not from the coaches of the league’s teams but from the owners.”

    Serious question….what’s the guarantee that Kaepernick will accept an opportunity to complete for a roster spot? Will he sign for veteran’s minimum or demand 20M+ ?
    Mike makes it sound so straight forward and uncomplicated. It’s fair to address whether CK is serious about signing if a team(s) brings him in for a tryout.

  44. Because nobody wants him and they are trying to make it seem like they really care so they don’t come off as bigots.

  45. It is obvious it is all about getting paid. He should start with another league, show what he may have then work his way up like we all do to promote to the top. What makes him so special?

  46. Why do you always paint his ability with rose colored glasses. Again, lets revisit. He was benched for BLAINE GABBERT! He got his job back, and then went like 2-8. He then opted out of his contract. So why do you make it sound like he was a top sacrificing his lucrative career to take a social stance? He is a mediocre backup QB who threw away an opportunity to help by making it all about himself. And I think the reason why a team won’t sign him is that he isn’t any good and they would get hell for cutting him after watching his practice. And what other QB do we talk about who hasn’t played in FIVE YEARS???

  47. Insert “It’s been 84 years” gif from the movie Titanic here.
    No NFL player has been out the league for this long a period of time and returned since Bronko Nagurski in 1943.
    Just give it up already…

  48. Customer is king.

    Kaep is (at best) a high end backup. How many people are going to start watching or going to games to watch him sit on the bench? Probably not very many. Is that worth risking the wrath of a good portion of your existing fanbase?

  49. If he really wanted to play, then he wouldn’t have demanded a starters salary after getting beat out by Blane Gabbert. He wouldn’t have demanded 20 million from the XFL. He would have sucked it up and competed for a job, returned as a backup, or gone to the CFL like Warren Moon or Doug Flutie. If he wasn’t a martyr then his girlfriend wouldn’t have put out racist tweets blowing his opportunity when the Ravens were about to sign him. Any other QB who hasn’t played in 5 seasons wouldn’t get a workout, so why does this guy deserve a workout? His talent doesn’t come near the distraction he brings. If he had Deshaun Watson’s talent, then he’d get an opportunity, but he’s not even close.

  50. Why hasn’t Kap gone to the Canadian Football League to prove himself, make more money, and stay in football shape?

    I’ll tell you why, because he knows he’s not that good, but he wants a team to hand him a starting job. Funny, for a guy who keeps claiming to love football he sure seems to have no problem being away from the game for 5+ years.

  51. Old Crow says:
    March 24, 2022 at 1:58 pm
    Political activism while working for a private interest tends to get one fired.
    ___________

    Advocating for equal rights is not political activism. It is a cause that everyone should support, regardless of their political party.

  52. Why are we hearing about him again now? Did he already burn through that $10M settlement, and is in danger of having to sell off his sneaker collection in order to survive?

  53. Wrong franchise to make this argument. Seattle has a hands off owner who basically delegates all football decisions to Pete. Pete has decided he doesn’t need a very bad, not bad, very bad and much older QB to take a roster spot. Kap is a gadget QB that could run (like the other two) but he his an awful passer that got beat out by Gabbert who since then has not beat out anybody else to be a starter. So when a QB fails to be out the back-up that pretty much ends that career, maybe the XFL would interested.

  54. drstrangelust says:
    March 24, 2022 at 3:13 pm

    I hope someone picks him up so the whole nation sees how bad he really is
    ————————————————————————–
    As long as it’s not your team, right? LOL.

  55. Right now many are operating under the assumption that he’s the Colin Kaepernick of 7-8 years ago. I actually think one of the reasons CK doesn’t want to step on the field (outside of workout videos he produces)….is that he wants to keep that perception fresh and preserved. If he steps on the field and is terrible, then that narrative goes straight out the window. Once fans and coaches can focus on his actual play…..he loses a lot of leverage and brand power if it’s not good.

  56. To the dude that said “Drew but….Lock, Davis Mills, Marcus Mariota, ” Enough people have given reasons why that’s a dumb argument but I also wanted to add that they’re all 10 years younger than CK

  57. ghjjf says:
    March 24, 2022 at 2:37 pm
    Any competent owner will know that brining in Kaepernick will result in a net loss of incoming revenue.
    ————————
    This is a given. But when you are on a crusade you don’t care about losing money, especially other people’s money 🙂

  58. A couple of points about this latest Colin Kaepernick editorial. One, nobody cares about him kneeling during the National Anthem. If that was a sticking point, half the NFL would be unemployed. Two, the settlement of the collusion lawsuit proves nothing. Per the Wall Street Journal, he was paid less than $10 million while the NFL was potentially on the hook for perhaps as much as $90 million. As such, the settlement is simply “going away money” and not an indication of anything else. The real reason that Kaepernick is not on an NFL roster is that the value he would bring to the team is less than his salary and starting position demands.

  59. I’m old enough to remember when this dude got benched for Blaine Gabbert… come to think of it, soon after he started his temper tantrum with his kneeling stuff. He’s a bad QB and on top of that he’s a child seeking attention. Not a chance he signs with anybody.

  60. I finally found a bright spot in Washington picking up Wentz. Makes them less likely to look at CK.

  61. The NFL arranged a workout for him which is unprecedented. He turned that into a circus. That was his best shot and he blew it.

  62. gibson45 says:
    March 24, 2022 at 3:07 pm
    Old Crow says:
    March 24, 2022 at 1:58 pm
    Political activism while working for a private interest tends to get one fired.
    ___________

    Advocating for equal rights is not political activism. It is a cause that everyone should support, regardless of their political party.

    —————

    If a regular Joe pulled those shenanigans at his or her place of employment they’d be bounced right out of there.

  63. Name the team and the guy Kaepernick should replace to provide said team enough of an upgrade to make it worth dealing with his baggage.

  64. I support him generally and hope he gets another shot, but I don’t blame any owner or GM who doesn’t want to deal with the back lash.

    Fans are supposed to like the QBs and hate the diva WR. Bringing on such a divisive QB…. Just read the other comments here, people still hate him for what he did.

    Maybe he should go to Canada and play for the Toronto Aloueskimo Riders.

  65. This stat should not only put things in perspective but should end the whole argument if Kap is good enough to play. Tim Tebow’s career QB rating is 85, Kaps last 19 starts was 84.

  66. I still don’t understand how anyone can really believe that kneeling is disrespectful.
    What’s the traditional pose used to propose to the love of your life? A huge sign of disrespectful according to one pouting politician. It’s incredible how many people wanted to agree with him enough to go along with it!

  67. nhpats2011 says:
    March 24, 2022 at 2:28 pm
    tyelee says:
    March 24, 2022 at 1:58 pm
    People like a 2nd chance story… It could even be Kaep’s story..
    3 easy steps:

    1)admit he was wrong
    2)offer public apology
    3)commit to raise money for local police wherever he signs to play

    ——

    How would those three things halo his skill set and teach him to read a defense?
    ————————————————————————————-

    It wouldn’t.. LoL…. I said nothing about a starting role… may get him a 2nd or 3rd string spot so media can finally let this go!

  68. This stat should not only put things in perspective but should end the whole argument if Kap is good enough to play. Tim Tebow’s career QB rating is 85, Kaps last 19 starts was 84.

  69. I seem to remember a workout that the NFL set up for him a few yrs ago. He cld have done the workout and said the right things about coming back. That’s not what he did. He pouted and stomped his feet about the workout and changed the location at the last moment. He went from a location that was all set up for him to one that was less ideal. It also caused some confusion and less people attended. Then he complains about that and does a grandstanding speech. That was the moment where the NFL really shut the door on him. Right there. He only has himself to blame for not being in the league. I don’t have any sympathy for him. He made off like a bandit after it. Got a nice deal with Nike, got endorsements, showed at award shows and they made a doc about him.

  70. No. Employers should be free to hire and fire anyone as long as it is within the law.

  71. 3 – 6 and 1 – 11 W-L record his last two seasons about says it all, he DOESN’T deserve another chance especially after sitting out 5yrs, PERIOD!

  72. Can he play? No he can’t he wasn’t that good the last time he took the field, and he got beat out by Blaine friggin Gabbert so nuff said right there…End of Story

  73. Come on all you media folks, let take this all the way. The owners and the GM’s should be asked about player contracts too, not the head coach! GM’s handle the contracts anyway.

  74. If kneeling for the anthem is why Kaepernick has been kept out of the league……answer me this. Why did Eric Reid and dozens of other players who knelt continue to play?

    The league is championing social justice programs and awareness all over the place. End Racism is printed in the end zones. No team is scared of these topics. In fact they are embracing them.

    And yet, Kaepernick still doesn’t play. Why?
    Is it because CK has done everything in his power to careful orchestrate the perception that he wants to play, but the league won’t him play to enhance his brand?

    Every time he got close to actually having to sign….he’s found a way not to. Think about it.

  75. If he was really interested in playing in the NFL he should go tear it up in USFL

  76. He chose to leave 49ers. Wouldn’t sign In Seattle for back up money. Pulled a stunt in Atlanta when teams went to go check him out. His publicity ends when a team signs him and he is a back up.

  77. Kaepernick’s last year in SF 2016
    GM:the notorious Trent Baalke
    Head coach: the more notorious Chip Kelly
    WR’s Jeremy Kerley, Quinton Patton, Torrey Smith, Aaron Burbridge
    TE’s Vance McDonald, Blake Bell, Garrett Celek
    I could go on and on, the point is, not exactly a murders row of offensive weapons or an impressive brain trust in the front office. The point is, Kaepernick was setup to fail on the field and everyone seems to forget what a dumpster fire, train wreck $h!t show the 49’ers organization was at that point in time. It’s nothing more than latently racist amateur Monday morning quarterbacking to suggest it was all on Kaepernick.

  78. BTW Blake Bell is the only player I listed still in the league. His six year career is impressive.
    Career
    Rec:58
    YDS:621
    Avg:10.7
    Long:48
    TD’s:0

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