Colin Kaepernick Eyes Comeback After First NFL Workout In 5 Years
Colin Kaepernick, whose protests during the national anthem in 2016 sparked demonstrations for racial justice, is set on making a comeback to the NFL.
The former NFL quarterback participated in a workout with the Las Vegas Raiders on Wednesday, ESPN reported.
It marked the activist’s first workout with an NFL team in roughly five years, according to the site, and his first since settling a 2019 lawsuit for an undisclosed amount over claims he was blacklisted by league owners.
The workout comes less than a month after Raiders owner Mark Davis, in an interview with NBC Sports, said Kaepernick deserved a shot at the league again.
Back in March, Kaepernick expressed interest in a workout via his Twitter account.
For The past 5 years I’ve been working out and staying ready in case an opportunity to play presented itself. I’m really grateful to my trainer, who I’ve been throwing to all this time. But man, do I miss throwing to professional route runners.
Who’s working?? I will pull up
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) March 13, 2022
He then said during an episode of the “I Am Athlete” podcast in April that he wanted to find his way back to an NFL team.
This was Colin Kaepernick last month telling the @IAMATHLETEpod that he wants to get back in the NFL and is willing to take a backup job to get in. This was his message to owners and GMs across the league: pic.twitter.com/ReyVvR7yOb
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) May 25, 2022
Kaepernick pointed to an NFL that looks different from when he last suited up in a league uniform.
“You have ‘End Racism’ in the back of your end zone. You have ‘Black Lives Matter’ on your helmet. Everything I’ve said should be in alignment with what you’re saying publicly,” Kaepernick said.
“It’s a $16 billion business. When I first took a knee, my jersey went to No. 1. When I did the deal with Nike, their value increased by $6 billion. Six billion. With a ‘b.’ ... So if you’re talking about the business side, it shows [it’s] beneficial. If you’re talking about the playing side, come in, let me compete.”
Kaepernick, who appeared in the 2013 Super Bowl, played six seasons for the San Francisco 49ers.
His protests, a response to police brutality and racial injustice, caused nationwide debate along with criticism from then-President Donald Trump in 2017.
If the Raiders sign him, Kaepernick would join a roster of four quarterbacks and reunite with the team’s offensive coordinator Mick Lombardi, a former assistant for the 49ers during the quarterback’s career there.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.