On Saturday, current NFL free agent Colin Kaepernick will work out for at least 13 teams in an effort to once again play quarterback in the league. From 2011 – 2016, Kaepernick played quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, leading them to the Super Bowl.
He has remained unsigned since 2017.
While he was in league, Kaepernick became the face of protest against police violence and racial injustice, kneeling during the National Anthem before games. He filed a grievance against the league, alleging that owners colluded to prevent him from playing. That grievance was eventually withdrawn following a settlement with the NFL.
Not everyone is convinced about the NFL’s motivation for hosting the workout. The workout will be on Saturday—not on Tuesday, as is the custom with these types of events. Saturdays are typically a day when most teams are traveling or are preparing for Sunday’s games.
Kaepernick’s former teammate Eric Reid, who joined Kaepernick in his protests, told ESPN that the scheduling makes the workout feel “disingenuous,” adding, “At this point, it feels like a PR stunt.”
Malcolm Jenkins of the Philadelphia Eagles told ESPN, “I really hope it’s a serious shot for him to get back in the league. I think he deserves to be in the league. For the last three years, he has unjustly not had a job. But based on all of the things that have led us to this point, it leaves me a little skeptical of the motivations behind it. But I think like anybody, we’re just all waiting to see.”