The biggest question many had after learning of Colin Kaepernick’s settlement with the NFL was what the league gave him to put the entire thing behind them. While we still don’t know for sure, we appear to have our first guess.
According to Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report, NFL officials believe the league paid out something between $60 million and $80 million as part of the settlement.
Number NFL team officials are speculating to me is the NFL paid Kaepernick in the $60 to $80 million range.
— mike freeman (@mikefreemanNFL) February 15, 2019
We may never know for sure, as a confidentiality agreement is part of the settlement, which was announced Friday. It’s also possible that there were other non-financial stipulations either side agreed to. That said, if these numbers are correct, it’s a pretty clear signal that the NFL really didn’t want to go to discovery. If they weren’t scared of losing the case, they were, at minimum, clearly concerned that damaging or embarrassing revelations could be made public as proceedings continued.
The big question is what Kaepernick’s incentive was to settle. Obviously his financial payout may have been huge, but he may have had a chance to win his case, or at least shed some light on some of the league practices he seemed interested in exposing. With the confidentiality agreement, the latter will not happen now.
Colin Kaepernick has settled his collusion case with the NFL.
Kaepernick’s attorney Mark Geragos announced on Friday in a statement that the two sides resolved the matter.
— Mark Geragos (@markgeragos) February 15, 2019
The league issued a similar statement.
“For the past several months, counsel for Mr. Kaepernick and Mr. Reid have engaged in an ongoing dialogue with representatives of the NFL. As a result of those discussions, the parties have decided to resolve the pending grievances. The resolution of this matter is subject to a confidentiality agreement so there will be no further comment by any party.”
Mr. Reid is a reference to Eric Reid, the safety for the Carolina Panthers who also joined the collusion suit against the league.
Yahoo’s Charles Robinson notes that there was talk from a source previously that Kaepernick would only withdraw his suit if there was a lucrative settlement.
In a stunning move strongly signaling a financial settlement between Colin Kaepernick and the #NFL, Yahoo Sports has learned the QB has withdrawn his collusion complaint against the NFL. Sources previously said Kaepernick would only withdraw if a lucrative settlement was secured.
— Charles Robinson (@CharlesRobinson) February 15, 2019
It’s hard to view this as anything other than disappointing from Kaepernick’s party. His whole stance of standing up for social injustice and racial inequality seemed to be at the cost of his earnings. Why would he agree to a confidential settlement now rather than let the truth come out? It seems that would better serve society, and now those who wanted to know the truth won’t get those answers.
Colin Kaepernick was offered an opportunity to play in the Alliance of American Football for the league’s inaugural season this year, but his salary demands made that unrealistic. In fact, the former NFL quarterback wanted even more money than was initially reported.
Reports on Thursday indicated that Kaepernick was seeking $20 million to play in the AAF in 2019. According to sports business reporter Darren Rovell, that number is inaccurate — Kaep wanted more.
$20 million number floating around on Colin Kaepernick for what he wanted to sign with the new upstart AAF is not completely accurate. I was told he wanted MORE. pic.twitter.com/7iW8tH7js4
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) February 15, 2019
Kaepernick had to have known there was no way the AAF was going to pay him that kind of money, even if he would have been the most high-profile player in the league. The AAF currently has the same contract structure for all players: they receive $70,000 in their first year, $80,000 in their second, and $100,000 in their third. Players are free to pursue NFL careers beginning in May, but they must return to the AAF the following season if they don’t secure an NFL opportunity.
There were rumblings that Kaepernick was demanding too much money from NFL teams at one point, but most agree he has not played in the league since 2016 because he is credited with starting the national anthem protest movement. While most players in the AAF are trying to prove they have the ability to play in the NFL, Kaepernick likely believes that is not the issue for him.
The Alliance of American Football league debuted last weekend with some recognizable names on their rosters, though none as big as Colin Kaepernick. The former NFL quarterback is a player they actually had conversations with about playing for the league, though his price tag was an impediment.
According to the AP, Kaepernick sought $20 million to consider playing in the league. The league also approached Tim Tebow, who declined their interest in order to continue his pro baseball career.
Kaepernick made over $43 million during his NFL career, according to Spotrac. He made at least $12 million per year from 2014-2016.
Kaepernick has not played in the NFL since 2016, which is when he began protesting racial and social injustice and police brutality through demonstrations in the national anthem. His methods led to nationwide attention, making him a polarizing figure.
Even though he is not playing football, Kaepernick does have a major endorsement deal with Nike.
The AAF has the same contract structure for their players: they receive $70,000 in their first year, $80,000 in their second, and $100,000 in their third. The $20 million mark from Kaepernick was probably a starting point for negotiations, but regardless, the figure was well beyond what they are paying any other players.
Republicans in Wisconsin sought and received the removal of Colin Kaepernick’s name from a resolution recognizing Black History Month.
The state legislature’s Black Caucus wrote the resolution, which recognized several black leaders, including Kaepernick. Kaepernick was born in Wisconsin before moving to California with his family when he was four.
Republican members of the state’s legislature did not like Kaepernick’s inclusion and amended the resolution to remove his name. State Assembly Majority Leader Jim Steineke, a white male, said Kaepernick’s name had to be removed “for obvious reasons” because he is too controversial.
The Democrats then faced a decision of opposing a resolution recognizing Black History Month or passing the resolution without Kaepernick’s name. The resolution passed unanimously in the Assembly on Tuesday, though one black politician later said she wished to change her vote.
According to the Wisconsin State Journal, people recognized in the resolution include “former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice; DPI Superintendent Carolyn Stanford Taylor; NFL coach James Caldwell; Milwaukee Bucks player Marques Johnson; Rev. Greg Lewis, chairman of Pastors United; Satchel Paige, the first African-American pitcher to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame; and former Milwaukee Chief of Police Arthur Jones.”
The resolution now heads to the Senate for a vote.
Kaepernick played quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers from 2011-2016. He began protesting during the national anthem in the 2016 preseason and continued the practice by kneeling throughout the regular season. His protest was meant to bring attention to issues such as police brutality and racial injustice in the country. He has become a polarizing figure, revered by some as a leader of a significant societal movement, and despised by others for his seeming disrespect to the country, police, and military.
Washington Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said during the week that the team discussed the possibility of signing Colin Kaepernick in the wake of injuries to Alex Smith and Colt McCoy, but those discussions never got to the point where they reached out to the quarterback or his agent.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, neither the Redskins nor any other NFL team has tried to contact Kaepernick to discuss signing him or bringing him in for a workout. Gruden said this week that Washington talked about bringing in Kaepernick but there would have been “a greater possibility” of him being an option if the injuries to Smith and Colt McCoy happened before the season.
Gruden added that Washington would have to change its offense too much to cater to Kaepernick’s skillset, which is something we have heard from other teams in the past. He insisted the team took nothing but football into consideration when opting to pass on the 31-year-old.
“When you’re talking about a backup quarterback this late in the game you want someone with a similar skill set to the quarterback you have,” Gruden said. “Not that Colin can’t do some of the things we’ve talked about, but we want someone with a little more familiarity.”
The Redskins ended up signing Mark Sanchez as a backup behind Colt McCoy, and they added Josh Johnson after McCoy suffered an injury in last week’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.
Kaepernick’s agent said recently that two NFL teams had expressed interest in signing the former San Francisco 49ers star, but that seems like it was just an attempt to drum up interest. Kaepernick has almost certainly played his last snap in the NFL at this point.
Colin Kaepernick’s attorney weighed in on the Washington Redskins not working out his client despite their quarterback needs.
Washington’s starter Alex Smith is out for the season with a compound fracture in his leg. Backup Colt McCoy suffered a broken right fibula on Monday night, though he has not been ruled out for the season. That has left Washington with Mark Sanchez as their starter, so they’re in desperate need of another QB.
On Tuesday, head coach Jay Gruden said the team had considered Kaepernick but decided against working him out. They didn’t have a great reason for not bringing him in.
Jay Gruden said QB Colin Kaepernick was discussed but said there's "not a lot of time to get a brand new QB and a system installed and taught in a couple days. He's been talked about and discussed, but we'll probably go in a different direction."
— John Keim (@john_keim) December 4, 2018
Kaepernick’s attorney for his collusion case, Mark Geragos, seems to think it’s obvious that this coincides with the collusion issue, according to comments shared by The Washington Post’s Mark Maske.
Mark Geragos, Colin Kaepernick's attorney in his collusion grievance against the NFL and teams, on the QB-needy Redskins saying they considered inviting Kaepernick to a workout but decided against it for football reasons: "Isn’t it obvious what’s happening?"
— MarkMaske (@MarkMaske) December 4, 2018
Kaepernick still has not given up on his dream of resuming his NFL career even though he is not receiving interest from teams.
Washington is giving consideration to Ryan Mallett, Landry Jones and Josh Johnson.