Colin Kaepernick took a big step toward an NFL return Wednesday, training for the Las Vegas Raiders.
It was the 34-year-old Kaepernick’s first practice with an NFL team since he began his post-season hiatus from the 2016 season. During the 2016 preseason, Kaepernick began kneeling during the national anthem before games to protest police brutality and racial inequality .
Kaepernick recently showcased his skills at the University of Michigan spring game. Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh was Kaepernick’s coach with the San Francisco 49ers.
“I can help you become a better team,” Kaepernick said during practice at Michigan Stadium. “I can help you win games.”
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OPINION:Colin Kaepernick’s training is a long-overdue move for Raiders who need quarterbacks
Here’s what we know about Kaepernick’s potential NFL future:
Why should the Las Vegas Raiders test Colin Kaepernick?
Last month, Raiders owner Mark Davis said Kaepernick “deserves every chance in the world to be a quarterback in the National Football League.”
“If our coaches and our general manager want him or want him to be the quarterback on this team, I would welcome him with open arms,” Davis added.
Kaepernick and the Raiders make sense from a football perspective.
Behind Derek Carr, the Raiders’ quarterback depth chart isn’t impressive. Las Vegas let Marcus Mariota — the team’s backup through the 2020 and 2021 seasons — go through free agency. On May 12, the Raiders traded with the New England Patriots to acquire Jarrett Stidham. Journeyman backup Nick Mullens and Chase Garbers – an undrafted rookie free agent from California – are also on the team’s depth list. Mullens brings the most experience, having started 17 games in his four-year NFL career.
Have other NFL teams taken an interest in Colin Kaepernick?
After Russell Wilson was traded to the Denver Broncos, the Seattle Seahawks considered potentially adding Kaepernick. However, talks between the Seahawks and Kaepernick stalled.
“Our talks have not progressed since the early connection we made,” said Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll. “I’ve been checking out a few of his workouts… to kind of keep me updated. He works really hard. He’s all over the country, traveling around and getting his workouts. So he’s still fighting for it. “
Geno Smith, Drew Lock and Jacob Eason are currently the Seahawks’ quarterbacks.
How long has it been since Colin Kaepernick played in an NFL game?
It has been five and a half years since Kaepernick last appeared in an NFL game. Kaepernick started the 49ers’ season, which ended on January 1, 2017 in a 25-23 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. In that game, Kaepernick completed 17 of 22 passes for 215 yards and a touchdown. Kaepernick played in 12 games (11 starts) during the 2016 season, throwing for 2,241 yards, 16 touchdowns and four interceptions with a 90.7 passer rating. The 49ers finished a dismal 2-14 in 2016, which led to the firing of Chip Kelly after his only season as San Francisco head coach.
In six seasons with the 49ers, Kaepernick started 58 games. He threw for 12,271 total yards, 72 touchdowns with 30 interceptions for a career passer rating of 88.9. During the 2012 season, Kaepernick took over as a starter for Alex Smith and helped the 49ers reach Super Bowl 47, where the team lost to the Baltimore Ravens.
What has Colin Kaepernick been up to all this time?
In October 2017, Kaepernick filed a collusion complaint against the league, claiming the owners conspired to keep him out of the league. Kaepernick settled that complaint 16 months later.
Kaepernick focused much of his off-field energy on civil rights activism. He is also the author of a best-selling children’s book. I Color Myself Different is based in part on his life. In 2019, Kaepernick founded his own publishing company, which “aspires to create a new generation of writers with diverse views and voices by creating powerful works of all genres that can build a better and fairer world”. He also has a production company, Ra Vision Media, which created the Netflix series Colin in Black & White.
Featuring: Mary Cadden, Tyler Dragon, Tom Schad