Is Colin Kaepernick being Blackballed?
Colin Kaepernick has provided plenty of headlines in the last year for several reasons. His decision to kneel during the national anthem provoked a lot of anger in many NFL fans and Americans around the world. He recently left $16.9 million on the table so that he could leave San Francisco and try his luck on the open market. As the end of March quickly approaches Colin still finds himself a free agent. This has stirred a lot of talk about the reasoning for this and has even caught the attention of director Spike Lee who said “ How is it that there are 32 NFL teams and KAP is still a free agent WTF smells mad fishy…”. This has sparked several debates about whether Kaepernick’s status is due to him being busted or being blackballed. Lets look at the facts.
In his past two seasons as a starter Colin has gone 3-16 but to be fair many will blame the lack of surrounding talent around him in the 49ers organization. Many football aficionados people will point to the eye test and say that Colin has lacked accuracy and good decision making when the pocket begins to collapse which are two things that go a long way when evaluating a quarterback, especially one who plans on being a starter wherever he ends up. We’re talking about a quarterback that is the only one on the market that has started a Super Bowl. This is the same guy that led the 49ers to a 12-3 record in 2013 and had 3200 yards and 21 touchdowns. With that being said he still has no job while Geno Smith, E.J Manuel ,and Mike Glennon have found new homes. Interesting to say the least. The one difference between those three quarterbacks and Kaepernick is that we have seen eliteness from Colin unlike the others. Their isn't that much mystery of how much potential he has, just questions of how to get it back. Since when has a quarterback with proven above average play been on the bottom of the list of free agency in the NFL? and why? As someone who watches The National Football League closely I can tell you its a game of “is the distraction worth the reward?" Apparently for teams that answer as of now is NO.
What is the distraction that Kaepernick really brings? It’s more of a PR nightmare than anything. One thing most Americans don't mess around with is our flag. When Colin decided to kneel during the rising of the flag and singing of the National Anthem he had to know it would cause major backlash. Months later we have recently heard President Trump speaking on it seemingly taking responsibility for Colin having no job right now. Let’s not also forget the wearing of the Fidel Castro t-shirt after Castro’s death which offended an entirely different community on top of everything else. Safe to say Kaepernick has been a household name in America for many and not in a good way. Now let me be fair, as an African American I understand why Colin Kaepernick decided to basically protest the National Anthem and the standing for the flag, but I wouldn't of personally done it. My opinion is that the flag stands for much more than just the absurd police brutality happening against our people of color and that if I was to protest the flag I couldn't stop until unfair treatment stopped, which will foreseeably never happen in a world of human people. To me, America represents much more positive than negative for minorities via the opportunities available, some that I have even experienced in my own life and because of that I would stand for the flag. I believe something needed to be done to address the police issue though but like most people didn’t know what to do, so I do applaud Kaepernick for taking a brave and extreme stance in his position. Colin has said that he is choosing to stand this upcoming year which has leads to questions of “why are you standing this season but not last? what changes have come about for people of color?”. The answer is nothing has changed and if anything with our newly elected president , people of color feel at an all time loss for words. But maybe, just maybe, Colin’s goal was to only start a conversation more than it was to protest until change happened, which I’m okay with and which he definitely did.
My bottom line is this: We don't know if Colin is being blackballed from the NFL yet, its to early to tell. We however do know that he is worthy of a NFL contract regardless of his poor play the last two years because the market for worse quarterbacks said so. If an American can't exercise his or hers freedom of speech and not be punished for it some way or another we are losing the very foundation of values that this country was built on in my opinion.
Till Next time, stay blessed.