Back in 2016, NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick began taking a knee during the national anthem. He did so as a way to protest police brutality and racial injustice.
Not only was that his last year with the San Francisco 49ers, but it was also his last year in the NFL. At least, it was the last year he played in the NFL up until now.
Kaepernick has never given up. He did not retire and he did not take a hiatus. Teams simply did not want him.
Some people will say it was because he was not good enough. However, it is pretty obvious that is not the case, and it never was. Kaepernick would, at the very least, fight for a starting spot on a lot of teams and be a great backup on for anyone else.
The issue was with the protest. Some people did not agree with it, and teams likely felt they had a few legitimate reasons to not want the quarterback. They could make arguments that they thought he might anger the fans or divide the locker room. At the same time the “media circus” that would surround him anywhere he went might be too much of a distraction.
They weren’t great arguments, but they could make them.
With each passing week, month and year, it looked more and more likely that Kaepernick was officially done with the NFL.
However, according to Mark Maske of the Washington Post, it looks like the circumstances for a Kaepernick return to the NFL might be getting “more favorable”.
The league is not likely to do anything like last year’s failed workout negotiations to try to have Colin Kaepernick signed by a team, a source said. But there are increased hopes by some in and around the NFL that circumstances are more favorable for a team to sign Kaepernick.
— MarkMaske (@MarkMaske) June 6, 2020
Colin Kaepernick has made it clear that he still wants to play football. The NFL did not seem that interested in “seriously” entertaining him though.
With everything going on lately, quite a few people have been flipping (or at least softening) their stance on disliking the protests that Kaepernick was a part of. That could play a large part in how the teams view him.
With that in mind, this is definitely something to watch out for. Kaepernick is incredibly polarizing but incredibly popular and talented, so it could be a massive story if he is signed — one that will create all types of headlines.
Those will include people giving props to the NFL, as well as those that will believe it is a publicity stunt. With that said, be prepared for plenty of headlines surrounding the quarterback in the near future.