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Colin Kaepernick, who last played professional football in 2016 — the year he knelt during the national anthem to protest racial injustice — worked out Wednesday for the Las Vegas Raiders, a league source told ESPN.
It was Kaepernick’s first workout with an NFL team since being exiled, and it was also the first time the former star quarterback visited with a team since meeting with the Seattle Seahawks in May 2017, before they passed on the opportunity to sign him. During that meeting, Kaepernick reportedly didn’t perform any football related activities and was seen by many as a sham interview.
Colin Kaepernick should be in the NFL. Duh.
Years before he was a Super Bowl appearing QB, Colin Kaepernick played at the University of Nevada, Reno, the only school to offer him a scholarship. Currently, the Las Vegas Raiders are the only NFL team that has given him another opportunity since 2016.
In 2019, Kaepernick hosted a botched workout session outside of Atlanta, Georgia, which turned off many already reluctant team scouts and personnel, but the opportunity yesterday may reflect a changing of minds in league ownership.
Per ESPN, Raiders owner Mark Davis is following in the spirit of his late father, Al Davis, who provided many opportunities, such as hiring the NFL’s first Black head coach (Art Shell) and its first woman chief executive (Amy Trask) in the modern era. The elder Davis also was the first team owner to draft a Black quarterback (Eldridge Dickey) in the first round and the second team owner to hire a Hispanic head coach, Tom Flores.
If not the Raiders, then who?
Colin Kaepernick, at last sighting, was a better quarterback than most in the NFL. While he hasn’t played in over five years, Derek Carr has been the starting quarterback for the Raiders during that time. If picked up by the Raiders, Colin Kaepernick would be competing for the starting job along with backup QB Jarrett Stidham who was traded earlier this month in a deal with the New England Patriots. The Raiders also have quarterback Nick Mullens, who signed with the Raiders this offseason.
Kaepernick calls out NFL on their slogans.
Colin Kaepernick recently stated on an “I Am Athlete” interview that today’s NFL should be more “in alignment” with his social views, given the league’s stance on other matters pertaining to race relations in the United States.
You have ‘End Racism’ in the back of your end zone. You have ‘Black Lives Matter’ on your helmet. Everything I’ve said should be in alignment with what you’re saying publicly,” he said. “It’s a $16 billion business. When I first took a knee, my jersey went to No. 1. When I did the deal with Nike, their value increased by $6 billion. Six billion. With a B.”