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.
NFL teams need backup quarterbacks, but Colin Kaepernick’s name isn’t even coming up in rumors anymore.
That is, apparently, not because Kaepernick has given up on playing. Former teammate Eric Reid, now with the Carolina Panthers, is close with the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback. According to Reid, Kaepernick still works out six days a week and would like to play again.
In light of news Redskins are signing Mark Sanchez, Panthers S Eric Reid says Colin Kaepernick hasn't packed it in.
"I'm probably third on the list of people closest to Colin. He wants to play. He's ready to play."
Says Kap working out six days a week.
— Joe Person (@josephperson) November 19, 2018
The Washington Redskins lost Alex Smith to a season-ending injury on Sunday and brought in Mark Sanchez to serve as a backup after working out a group of veteran quarterbacks that didn’t include Kaepernick. To some, it’s evidence that Kaepernick is being blacklisted, especially if he’s still willing to play.
The Washington Redskins are looking to add a veteran backup quarterback in the wake of Alex Smith’s devastating injury, and one former NFL star feels the names that are being thrown around provide further evidence that Colin Kaepernick is unemployed for reasons other than football.
Ian Rapoport of NFL Media tweeted on Sunday that the Redskins will be bringing in a group of veteran free agents that includes Mark Sanchez, TJ Yates, Kellen Clemens and EJ Manuel. Antonio Cromartie feels Kaepernick is better than any of the aforementioned quarterbacks.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 19, 2018
— ANTONIO CROMARTIE (@CRO31) November 19, 2018
There have been some rumblings that Kaepernick isn’t even sure if he wants to play in the NFL, but but Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk says he continues to work out and prepare as if a team could come calling. The more time that passes without him playing, the less likely it seems that the call will come.
Kaepernick’s attorney recently claimed that there were two NFL teams that expressed legitimate interest in the 31-year-old, though there’s no reason to believe that was true.
As quarterback injuries continue to pile up across the NFL, teams have been forced to examine the free agent market for veterans like Derek Anderson who can either start or provide depth at the position. Colin Kaepernick is also willing to be that guy, but the interest still is not mutual.
TMZ reports that Kaepernick has not gotten any calls from NFL teams despite situations like the one in Buffalo, where Anderson’s concussion led to the Bills signing journeyman Matt Barkley. The San Francisco 49ers may also being turning to a third-string quarterback on Thursday night, when undrafted Nick Mullens may have to start in place of C.J. Beathard.
Kaepernick’s lawyer hinted last month that two team were thinking about signing the 30-year-old, but that sounds like it was a failed attempt to drum up interest. When someone like Barkley — who has 18 career interceptions compared to just eight touchdown passes — gets a call before Kaepernick, that’s not a good sign.