Kaepernick remains in quarterback purgatory

Brady Mooers

When watching the pregame for an NFL game, you will often hear the announcers mention something pertaining to sitting during the National Anthem. It has recently become a hot-button issue as football season has just started up again. And with the recent events in Charlottesville, this issue has become hotter than ever.

Colin Kaepernick shocked the nation when he first sat during the National Anthem in the San Francisco 49ers third preseason game in the 2016-2017 season. He had originally sat during the first two preseason games but had not gained attention until the third. When asked about his protest, Kaepernick said, “I am going to continue to stand with the people that are being oppressed.”

Since his first original protest, players such as Marshawn Lynch, Michael and Martellus Bennett, Marcus Peters, Mike Evans and Arian Foster have joined in protesting the injustices they feel African-Americans are enduring in America in 2016-2017.

Even Barack Obama acknowledged the protest and said, “I don’t doubt his sincerity. I think he cares about some real, legitimate issues.”

But now that the San Francisco 49ers didn’t re-sign Kaepernick and he is currently a free agent, many people are calling upon their team’s owners to give Kaepernick a shot. Since the end of the 16-17 season, not many teams have expressed interest in signing Kaepernick, leading many people to believe it has to do with his protests, but is that really the whole story?

The 49ers finished the season with a lackluster 2-14 record, the second worst in the entire NFL. After beginning the season as the starter, Kaepernick was benched 12 games in for Blaine Gabbert. Kaepernick finished the season with 16 touchdowns, 4 interceptions, and 9 lost fumbles. He had an overall QBR (Quarterback Rating) of 49.5, ranking him 23rd out of 30 eligible QBs. Based on his statistics, you could understand why many GMs may not want to sign Kaepernick.

Along with his “off the field issues,” Kaepernick would also command a very high salary because of what he has previously earned.

His base salary in 2015 was $10,400,000 and climbed to $11,900,000 in 2016. With NFL cap space very limited due to the 52-man squad size, many NFL teams would rather spend their money on players who play a position other than QB.

Many teams have already drafted whom they view to be their franchise QB and this creates the Kaepernick problem. He is a QB in waiting in a market that doesn’t believe he is worth it.

With no job as of Sept. 13, and the added “off the field issues” many owners view he would bring into the locker room, Colin Kaepernick is a NFL starter quality QB who is in purgatory. While I certainly agree with his cause and what he is standing (or sitting) for, he took a chance by protesting during the anthem and it may have cost him another QB job.

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