He took a knee….the NFL has been brought to its knees again.
The Colin Kaepernick story that will not go away. Now the weekend settlement, out of court, to pay money to the ex-49ers quarterback to drop his lawsuit against the NFL, for allegedly black-balling him after his 2016-display of kneeling during the National Anthem to protest social injustice in the killings of black men by police officers.
Typical NFL, an out of court settlement, with a confidentiality clause, as if the story will go away. No admittance of wrongdoing either. This Kaepernick settlement comes weeks before the actual trial was to begin.
Weeks before Emails, texts, correspondence, depositions would have been dragged into court.
You’ve heard that before haven’t you? The NFL Concussion settlement, just before that case was to go to trial, the NFL woke up one morning and wrote a check for 865M-to fund research, and to pay players who died of CTE to the brain. The NFL did this rather than go to court in what would have been an angry display of evidence, ‘what they knew……when they knew it…..what did they or didn’t they do about it’.
No one is saying, yet, what the payoff to the ex-49ers QB might be. He opted out of his 12.6 M contract with San Francisco to test free agency. , after leading the Niners to the Super Bowl one year and the NFL title game another year.
It might well be he got a huge check, maybe even equal to what he might have made in the NFL had he played the last two years, possible earning potential of 10M a year. Bet too, the NFL picked up his legal fees to end this public dialogue. Maybe he does not go to court, and instead gets 25M total in the settlement.
He has not played a game in 2017 or 2018, as desperate NFL teams signed guys off the street like Josh Johnson, Sam Bradford, Derrick Anderson, Austin Davis, Nathan Peterman and Matt McGloin to fill roster spots. Everyone got a call, but not Kaepernick.
You could condemn the QB for kneeling infront of the flag, I did, coming from a military family. But then when you see what Kaepernick did, with personal contributions over 1M of his own money, while unemployed, to school lunch programs in both Oakland and San Francisco, maybe you look at things differently.
The contributions he made to help parolees fix their lives after prison. The donation of money to build a hospital in Ghana. In terms of caring about others, he walked the walk, talked the talk.
Yes, the NFL started foundations in each city, supposedly funding money to deliver messages from NFL players to the inner cities about improving life and programs to help the disadvantaged.
Sometimes it smacks of the ideology, throw money at it, and it will go way. Used to work the way in the NFL, until players went public over health benefits and brain damage and suicides, and said the NFL’s new business practice was “Delay-Deny-Hope You Die”
In retrospect, the quarterback was not protesting the flag, just the inequality that still seems to exist in 2019, bringing back hurtful memories how Americans treated minorities as if this was 1959 or 1939 or 1899. It was happening as America waved the flag.
Some will say Kaepernick is a sellout, taking a payday now, for what he decried 24-months ago. But his sacrifices have been huge for his public stance of what ails society.
The Flag has been sacred in our nation. See the country reaction to 9/11….the flags everywhere…the chants USA-USA. Read up on the patriotic response right after Pearl Harbor in World War II. That’s why the hatred response was so strong initially.
But then teammates, white and black, joined the cause. Players, then coaches, then owner Jerry Jones. It was a show of solidarity, and maybe a message to the NFL, to do something, because we see something wrong.
Kaepernick didn’t raise a fist, give a finger, burn a flag. He made a statement and up till now has paid for it by missing out two years at the peak of his career talent wise.
If this had gone to court, and if he won, the damages financially could have been huge, maybe 40-to-50M considering time lost on the field, money lost in contracts, while he was being blackballed.
The hypocrisy of NFL leadership exists still this morning. Tell me Kareem Hunt, Reuben Foster, Greg Hardy, Josh Gordon, Adrian Peterson deserved to be in the NFL for what they did, and compare Kaepernick’s actions to the above mentioned and tell me who was treated unfairly?
We each have an opinion, and that’s America. So was Kaepernick’s right to free speech.
I’ll let you decide if Kaepernick was a polarizing figure…or a cultural symbol?
You tell me, who is stained more, the quarterback for what he did, or the NFL for trying to sacrifice his career?
Is Kap a Super Bowl quarterback…or maybe a more important social activist?
And as they write a check to the ex-49er, think about the NFL history in these matters. You believe they woke up one morning with ‘conscience’ and decided to pay out all that money in the CTE concussion settlement?
You think they suddenly decided this quarterback was right in all he stood for, as he kneeled?
No, there probably was a paper trail, a smoking gun, in both the CTE lawsuit and in this Anthem issue, that leads to where we are today.
We see, if at age 32, he gets a contract offer now this off season?. Does his unique pass-run option style still fit? Does losing 2-years take the edge of his game?
In taking a knee, he stood up for social injustice, and he brought the NFL to its knees again, on the way it’s done its business, treats people, and what it is all about.
By taking a knee, he stood up for the battle against racism, and that may be more important than any TD pass or games that Colin Kaepernick ever won. The NFL comes away looking like a loser again.