Seattle Seahawks rescind Colin Kaepernick invite over kneeling
Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback has not played in the NFL since January 2017
In this file photo from October 2016, Colin Kaepernick of the San Francisco 49ers kneels for the US national anthem before their game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Levi’s Stadium. Photograph: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
The Seattle Seahawks were all set to give former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick a workout earlier this week, but rescinded the invitation after he wouldn’t say whether he plans to continue kneeling in protest during the national anthem, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
The team wasn’t so much concerned with Kaepernick’s position as it was that he didn’t seem to have a firm plan for his future, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
“On Colin Kaepernick and #Seahawks: From a team perspective, they wanted to hear Kaepernick’s plan going forward, including but not limited to kneeling. There is also the lawsuit, for instance . . . From those close to Kaepernick, they maintain it was only, Will you keep kneeling?,” read one Rapoport tweet.
“#Seahawks brass, John Schneider and Pete Carroll, want Colin Kaepernick to consider how he wants to proceed on everything (not just anthem) and get together at a later date when his plans are formed. Clearly, Seattle has accepted players speaking out for what they believe,” read another.
Kaepernick has a pending lawsuit alleging collusion by the league office, owners and teams to keep him out of the NFL. He was deposed by the NFL’s lawyers in that lawsuit on Tuesday.
Kaepernick began his pre-game protest following excessive force cases involving police. He first sat during the anthem in the 2016 season and then knelt. Eventually he was joined by his San Francisco 49ers team-mates, including safety Eric Reid, and players on other teams followed suit.
In 69 games (58 starts), all with the 49ers, Kaepernick won 28 games and lost 30 and had thrown for 12,271 yards, completing 59 per cent of his passes and tossing 72 touchdowns and 30 interceptions.
Kaepernick, who hasn’t played since January 1st 2017, also has 2,300 career rushing yards and 13 touchdowns on the ground.
He hasn’t had a workout with any NFL teams since becoming a free agent.
Kaepernick, 30, met with Seattle during free-agency last off-season, but the team opted instead to sign Austin Davis to back up Russell Wilson. Davis, who was on a one-year deal, is now a free agent and the team also recently released Trevone Boykin, leaving them with zero options behind Wilson at the moment.
McNair was infamously quoted in an ESPN report as suggesting the league should crack down on protests because “we can’t have the inmates running the prison”.
Head coaches John Harbaugh of the Ravens and the team’s general manager, Ozzie Newsome, are also on the request list from Kaepernick’s attorneys. The same goes for the Seahawks’ braintrust of coach Carroll and general manager Schneider and NFL executives Troy Vincent and Arthur McAfee.