Colin Kaepernick’s “private” workout


Matt Seaman

Eve Tucholski appears in a Colin Kaepernick jersey.

Colin Kaepernick’s imprudent decision to kneel for the National Anthem cost him more than his job. It has been three years since Kaepernick has appeared in an NFL game. Whether it is his protest movement or recent unfortunate workout, his ability to return to the league has been hindered. As each season passes, his chances of being signed to a team grow slimmer every year.

A few weeks ago, former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick was told to report to the Atlanta Falcons’ practice facility, but half an hour before the workout Kaepernick announced that he wanted a transparent and open process and changed the location about 44 miles away from the facility. The new session took place at Charles R. Drew High School in Riverdale, Georgia. He hoped he would attract more media and attention, but received the exact opposite.

Kaepernick lost his job with the 49ers because he decided to kneel for the national anthem on live television. He claims he knelt due to his belief that wrongdoings toward African-Americans and minorities in the United States were caused by “systematic racism”. His views and so-called dauntless protests have caused an uproar throughout the past few years. Fellow athletes have taken part in the movement including Dwyane Wade, Chris Paul, and Kelsey Bone.

According to the National Football League (NFL), players are encouraged but not required to stand for the flag. 

Kap has spent the past three years out of work. Since then, virtually every NFL team that needed a new QB has signed a significantly worse passer than Kaepernick. The average completion for the 50 quarterbacks that did play was 60.38%. Most of these quarterbacks are not in the league anymore. Between March 2017 and  Nov. 2017, 42 quarterbacks were signed to an NFL team. During the 2018 season, four teams who lost their passers or were hindered by subpar play signed quarterbacks who have had little success in the league. A grand total of 115 quarterbacks have been signed have signed with teams since Kaepernick opted out of his contract back in 2016.

This season, in particular, 11 quarterbacks have been placed on the Injured Reserve list. Meaning there were 11 opportunities for an NFL team to contact Kaepernick. As usual, nobody seemed interested in him. In Nov. 2017, he filed a grievance against the NFL and owners, accusing them of colluding him out of the league. In Feb. 2019, he withdrew the grievance after making a settlement with the NFL.

Many teams have shown interest in signing the quarterback, but nobody has pulled the trigger on it. Across the league, injuries have cost a lot of current quarterbacks their season. Unfortunately for Kaepernick, no team or owner has signed him. His protests for this movement may be considered successful by some, but it, unfortunately, cost him the ability to play in the NFL.