When George Floyd, a Black man, died at the hands of a former Minneapolis police officer, many NFL figures said that Colin Kaepernick "was right" when he kneeled during the national anthem in protest of police brutality and racial injustice. Reports surfaced at the same time saying that teams were interested in signing the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, but a deal has not surfaced. Now Pro Football Talk reports that the previous interest "was false."
Mike Florio of PFT spoke to a source with knowledge of the situation. According to this individual, there was "fake interest" expressed by NFL teams following Floyd's death. The source said that this was seemingly out of guilt and that there has been zero interest in months. This report is in contrast to previous statements about how NFL teams had contacted Kaepernick's "friends and associates" and that they would contact his agent. According to Florio, no teams ever actually contacted the agent.
"The news that the Eagles will pay 41-year-old quarterback Josh McCown $12,000 per week for what amounts to a no-show, quarantine quarterback job underscores the widespread lack of interest in Kaepernick," Florio wrote in his report. He said that the Eagles made the deal with McCown due to his experience with the team's offense. However, Florio also said that this same reasoning would justify offering Kaepernick a similar contract due to his skillset and similarities to other dual-threat quarterbacks.
This latest update about Kaepernick's situation follows a previous report from Florio in which he said the former 49ers QB would not get a job in the near future. He said that NFL teams "had no interest" in bringing Kaepernick to town and that several teams would not offer him a contract. Anthony Lynn of the Los Angeles Chargers and Pete Carroll of the Seattle Seahawks both openly endorsed the QB's return to the NFL but neither offered him a contract. Kaepernick remained unsigned heading toward September, and this trend will potentially continue into the season.
Kaepernick last played for the 49ers during the 2016 season, his first kneeling in protest of police brutality. He entered the season recovering from three offseason surgeries and lost the starting job to Blaine Gabbert. He remained on the bench until Week 6 when head coach Chip Kelly made a change to the starting lineup. Kaepernick ultimately started 11 games, throwing for 2,241 yards, 16 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. He also rushed for 468 yards and another two scores while the 49ers finished 2-14.