If you thought we’d heard the last of noted National Anthem protester and former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, think again. The budding social justice warrior still hasn’t given up on the idea that he can land a starting spot with a National Football League team simply by demanding that one is owed to him. He filed a “grievance” against the league last year claiming that the league and the various team owners were all “colluding” against him to keep him from playing.
This month that process continues to grind on and the focus is on the Baltimore Ravens. They interviewed both Kaepernick and former Washington Redskins starter Robert Griffin III, eventually deciding to go with a one year contract with RGIII. This, apparently, adds more weight to the collusion theory in Kaepernick’s mind. (Baltimore Sun)
Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome and coach John Harbaugh will be questioned under oath Thursday as part of former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s collusion grievance against the NFL, Pro Football Talk reported Wednesday night.
The interviews will take place at the Under Armour Performance Center, according to the report.
A Ravens spokesman declined to comment, saying, “Legal proceedings of this nature are confidential and cannot be commented on publicly.”
The Ravens’ starter, Joe Flacco, is still dealing with a back injury which plagued him last season, so Baltimore wants to have some experienced firepower ready to go at the QB position. RGIII’s record is far from perfect (as is Kaepernick’s) but the team decided he was worth taking a chance on. Now they will have to answer for their decision in closed testimony. They aren’t the first to face this inquisition, either. The owner of the Houston Texans was deposed in March as part of the same grievance procedure. More are expected to testify over the course of this spring and summer, including league executives.
This isn’t a regulatory move by the government or even an action being taken in court. It’s a strictly internal matter for the league to handle, at least for now. Keeping that in mind, this really isn’t a subject for mass protests or complaints about the legality of the situation. The NFL and the Players’ Association all agreed to these guidelines independently and if Kaepernick is following the rules they put in place then the NFL has nobody but themselves to blame.
But just chiming in from the peanut gallery here, doesn’t the entire premise of this “grievance” seem to be worthy of mockery? Protesting or not, Kaepernick has to compete for a spot on a team just like any other free agent. And unless he can cite some sort of discrimination based on race, religion or something else, how does he expect to force a team to take him or claim some sort of damages when they don’t? The number of people vying for the limited number of starting spots in the NFL is insane. The teams can pick whoever they want and they only have to answer to their fans and advertisers if their choices turn out to be duds.
One last thought on this subject: Colin Kaepernick has spent so long now hurling accusations, making demands and attempting procedural actions against the league and the various teams, would he even want a job if someone was forced to give him one? That would have to make for some awfully uncomfortable times at the team meetings. And if the Ravens were somehow forced to take him, could RGIII sue Kaepernick over losing his job? Inquiring minds want to know.