There are a number of teams out there who could use a franchise quarterback. They are hard to come by at the moment, the market is limited and any quarterback who is drafted this year will need to be given time to develop. The class this year is not bad, but is shallow on talent.
Colin Kaepernick surely fits on to someones roster out there, however the quarterback is still a free agent and with the 49ers acquiring free agents Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley, a return to the 49ers is as good as off the table. While free agency is full of rumours and players being linked to other teams, Kaepernick has not been linked to anyone since entering free agency last week.
An anonymous AFC head coach talked to Mike Freeman from Bleacher Report and said the following:
“He can still play at a high level, the problem is three things are happening with him.
First, some teams genuinely believe that he can’t play. They think he’s shot. I’d put that number around 20 percent.
Second, some teams fear the backlash from fans after getting him. They think there might be protests or (President) Trump will tweet about the team. I’d say that number is around 10 percent. Then there’s another 10 percent that has a mix of those feelings.
Third, the rest genuinely hate him and can’t stand what he did [kneeling for the national anthem]. They want nothing to do with him. They won’t move on. They think showing no interest is a form of punishment. I think some teams also want to use Kaepernick as a cautionary tale to stop other players in the future from doing what he did.”
Kaepernick has PR issues and the reality is that most teams would rather have nothing to do with him despite the fact that he has the potential to take a team to a Super Bowl regardless of his consistency issues.
Meanwhile, he has been training this offseason in New York and been continuing his social activism. Last week he posted a video on social media asking Turkish Airlines to step in and help with the Somalia relief efforts. Reports have indicated that Kaepernick intends to stand for the anthem in 2017 instead of kneeling because he doesn’t want the act to distract from the overall discussion on inequality.
The problem is that right now nobody seems to want to have much to do with him. Even the Jets who have big quarterback holes to fill have said that they are not interested in picking up Kaepernick. Jets owner Woody Johnson said Kaepernick was one of the reasons why TV ratings last season fell. Johnson is also an ardent Donald Trump supporter.
The bottom line is that while teams want they players to represent well and been seen favourably in a public light, Kaepernick may just simply be too much of a risk to take. Given his injury history, consistency issues and his track record of social activism – teams may decide that the better option is simply to stay away.