NFL teams invited to Colin Kaepernick private workout this weekend
Atlanta, Ga. — Free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who claimed the NFL and its teams colluded to keep him from playing following his refusal to stand during the National Anthem, will take part Saturday in a private workout organized by the league.
The NFL sent a memo Tuesday to its 32 teams, saying the session will include on-field work and interview time with the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, ESPN first reported.
The workout will take place at an undisclosed location in Atlanta, a source with direct knowledge of the arrangement has told CNN. Clubs that don’t attend in person will have access to video of the session. The event will be closed to media.
Kaepernick tweeted about the development on Tuesday night.
“I’m just getting word from my representatives that the NFL league office reached out to them about a workout in Atlanta on Saturday,” he tweeted. “I’ve been in shape and ready for this for 3 years, can’t wait to see the head coaches and GMs on Saturday.”
According to the source, several NFL teams inquired about the athlete-turned-activist’s “football readiness” and desire to return to the league.
Kaepernick hasn’t played in the league since the 2016 season — the same season he first sat during the playing of the National Anthem. The protest later evolved into kneeling after onetime Seattle Seahawk and Green Beret Nate Boyer convinced Kaepernick it would be more respectful to the nation’s military, the quarterback has said.
Kaepernick said he did so to protest police shootings of African American men and other social injustices faced by black people in the United States.
Kaepernick became a free agent in 2017. No team offered him a contract, and that October, he filed a grievance against the league, accusing team owners of colluding to keep him from being signed. The NFL denied any collusion. Kaepernick and former teammate Eric Reid, who knelt with Kaepernick, settled their cases.
Earlier this year, Kaepernick posted videos of himself on Twitter, taking part in weight training and throwing footballs.
ESPN reported it has seen the memo which was sent to teams informing them of the workout.
Kaepernick, who led the 49ers to the 2013 Super Bowl, played his last game on January 1, 2017, in the 49ers’ loss to the Seattle Seahawks. During that season, in which the 49ers were 2-14, Kaepernick threw 16 touchdowns and had four interceptions. He rushed for 468 yards on 69 attempts.
He opted out of his contract after the season and has been a free agent since.