The first day of free agency typically carries the huge signings. Agents and teams had deals laid out and only had to wait until the move could be official. Day 2 carries a second tier of signings. Some of the big signings hold out until the second day if a big decision is on their mind or they have a few more meetings to attend to. We’re onto Day 3.
But we haven’t heard a peep from Colin Kaepernick . No meetings, no potential destinations, nothing. Either he’s got too many question marks as a quarterback or his protest from the last season has front offices running scared to bring that circus over. It might be some mix of both, but when quarterbacks like Geno Smith and Nick Foles are getting a look this offseason, it would not be at all surprising if the latter issue was playing a big role.
It’s a shame, really. Kaepernick could, at the very least, be a valuable backup on a team, but for all the positive that Kaepernick did in his sitting during the National Anthem, it brought a lot of attention teams simply don’t want to deal with. For all the donations (which got more donations from the San Francisco 49ers), all the successful discussion and possible change his kneeling led to, teams still don’t want to deal with the spark that caused all this smoke.
If Kaepernick had the ability of Tom Brady, I wonder if this would then be an issue. Fact of the matter is, he’s viewed as an exposed product at the quarterback position. Despite a better season in Chip Kelly’s offense, the truth remains: he runs scared in the pocket and has accuracy issues. And most of the NFL runs an offense with a guy under center. Not good. Teams could say “Well he has won in the playoffs, we could take a flyer on him,” but then there’s always someone in that room to say, “Yeah, but do you think we want what comes with us experimenting with him?”
Even if he plans on standing this season during the anthem, it seems like last season is still fresh in their minds. He may have brought a lot of good, but executives may fear he brings headaches as well.
One would think Kaepernick will get brought in down the line. Someone will get desperate and need an arm, and there are only so many quality quarterbacks around the league. The fact no one wants to even bring him in for a workout this early suggests that this is not just a product of his on-field talent, but also a product of what he did on the sidelines. For a quarterback that played in the Super Bowl and nearly took his team to another one, you’d think someone would want to at least have him throw a ball. But nothing.
Kaepernick’s protest had a lot of people talking, bringing awareness and discussion to critical issues surrounding this country—and hopefully change. Potentially being black-balled by the NFL might be the price he will pay.