News ID: 261703
Published: 0230 GMT November 17, 2019

Kaepernick ready to play for any team after tryout

Kaepernick ready to play for any team after tryout
CARMEN MANDATO/GETTY IMAGES

A spirited Colin Kaepernick said he was ready to play anywhere in the National Football League after a long awaited tryout at an Atlanta area high school on Saturday.

“I’ve been ready for three years. I’ve been denied for three years,” said the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback who made headlines by kneeling at games during the US anthem to protest against racial injustice, Reuters reported.

He has said teams would not sign him because they wanted to distance themselves from the protests, which US President Donald Trump criticized as unpatriotic and disrespectful.

“So we are waiting for the 32 owners, 32 teams and (league commissioner) Roger Goodell to stop running,” the 32-year-old said. “Stop running from the truth, stop running from the people.

“We are ready to play. We are ready to go anywhere.”

The NFL had arranged the tryout at the Atlanta Falcons training facility, but at the last minute the quarterback’s representatives moved the workout to a high school stadium.

Kaepernick said it was done so media could be present.

Live stream video showed Kaepernick making a variety of throws to a group of receivers to applause from on-lookers.

His arm talent remains “elite” and is the same as when he came out of college, ESPN reported an NFL executive commenting after the workout, adding Kaepernick threw the ball well.

Representatives from at least 25 of the NFL’s 32 teams had been scheduled to attend the workout. Several made it to the new location.

Before the move, both protesters and supporters had waited for Kaepernick outside the Falcons’ facility.

One protester, waving a US flag, held a sign that said “Colin Kaepernick un-American Loser. Get out of my town”.

Supporters included one follower wearing a Kaepernick jersey and displaying a sign that read “I’m with Kap.”

 

Knelt during anthem

 

Among the first players to kneel during the pregame US national anthem in protest against extrajudicial killings of black people by police, Kaepernick has been unable to find a team to sign him since 2017.

A second-round draft choice in 2011, he played with the 49ers for six seasons, leading them to the 2013 Super Bowl and the National Football Conference title game the next season.

During the third preseason game in 2016 he began sitting during the US anthem.

The following week and during regular season, Kaepernick began kneeling as protest against social injustice.

He became a free agent after the 2016 season and remains unsigned.

Kaepernick filed a collusion grievance against NFL owners in October 2017 after going unsigned as a free agent. The two sides resolved the grievance in February under a confidentiality agreement.

 

 

 

 

   
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