Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who hasn’t played a single snap of football since the 2016 NFL season, doesn’t appear as if he’ll have any future, whatsoever, in the league at this point.
According to Fox News, commissioner Roger Goodell recently stated that on the heels of his botched, NFL-sponsored private workout — an event that garnered initial attraction from dozens of team scouts — that the league will be moving on after having given Kaepernick an honest chance at a comeback.
“This was about creating an opportunity. We created that opportunity. It was a unique opportunity, a credible opportunity,” Goodell said, according to Reuters, “and he chose not to take it. I understand that.”
“We’ve moved on,” Goodell explained to reporters during the league’s winter meetings that were recently held in Irving, Texas.
Kaepernick, who was highly criticized by NFL fans at the time, infamously began the “take a knee” movement in protest of the American National Anthem and the American flag. His explanation for the on-field activism at the time was that it was his choosing to protest “police brutality” and other perceived social injustices affecting minorities in America and because of that, he felt that paying tribute to the country’s national anthem was uncalled for.
Dozens of other players followed suit, including teammate Eric Reid, who also didn’t play in the league for a period of time but later landed a contract.
Kaepernick and Reid eventually sued the NFL, claiming the activism led to their supposed “blacklisting” in the league. The NFL eventually settled with the two players out of court for an undisclosed, but reportedly lucrative sum.
The player-turned-activist would later ink a massive, multi-year deal with famous sports apparel maker Nike and spark a nationwide controversy over a “Betsy Ross flag” shoe the company was set to release on Independence Day, but reversed the decision because Kaepernick convinced them that the flag invoked memories of slavery in the United States.
Earlier this year, the NFL set up what was supposed to be a high-profile comeback event for Kaepernick, providing him an arena to show that he was still capable of playing at the highest levels. Rumors swirled about potential interest from several NFL teams who battled an usually high number of quarterback injuries in the 2019-2020 season.
But after Kaepernick canceled the event at the last minute and moved it 60 miles away to a local high school football field, the excitement faded and only a few scouts showed up.