NFL Execs Weigh In On Kaepernick Debate: Is He Simply Not Good Enough?

Nick Kangadis | September 1, 2017
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It’s all about the football, folks. The media driven narrative that claims former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick doesn’t have a job currently in the National Football League (NFL) because of his social justice stances is just that: a narrative.

Sports Illustrated football analyst Peter King spoke with executives from NFL teams under the condition of anonymity to get their take on why Kaepernick doesn’t have a job.

None of the three executives interviewed said that Kaepernick’s protests have anything to do with him not being on an NFL roster.

According to the interviewee identified as “Executive 2”:

To me, the protests, all that, it wasn’t even a factor for us. It was the ability to fit within our offense. He doesn’t throw the ball great, he’s more of an on-the-move, zone-read type of quarterback. He needs to be in a specific system. For us, it was a system thing. What he does well is totally outside what most teams do. And so here’s my question: I understand the Kaepernick deal, why it’s news, but nobody’s talking about RG3 [former NFL quarterback Robert Griffin III]? I know since it’s Kaepernick, it’s what sells, but the problem that RG3 has getting a job is the same as Kaepernick for a lot of teams.

That’s a fair point considering both Kaepernick and Griffin’s styles of play suit the college game better than the NFL game. Both players don’t have much patience in the pocket, and therefore are looking to run the ball rather than wait for the open target. The NFL is much faster than the college game, so if you’re a running quarterback, eventually, the defense will catch up with you. That’s where the injuries that have plagued player’s careers like Griffin come in.

However, no one is coming out to say that Griffin should have a job in the NFL. Why? Because, as we’ve seen with sports entities like ESPN, sports have become politicized, much like everything else that doesn’t need to be politicized.

“Executive 3” had this to say:

I don’t like the guy as a player. I don’t think he can play. I didn’t think he could play at Reno, I don’t think he can play now. … You don’t think if he was a good player, 20 teams would be lining up? …  He’s inaccurate, inconsistent reading defenses. He needs everything to be perfect around him, and he needs to run a certain offense. When he was rolling, they had an unbelievable defense and a great running game with an amazing offensive line. Everything was perfect. And you consider that, why isn’t there a debate about RG3? He just wasn’t a consideration.

While Kaepernick does admittedly have a very strong arm, as Executive 3 said, Kaepernick is not the most accurate of passers. In order to be a successful quarterback in the NFL, you simply cannot have a career completion percentage of 59.8.

Executive 3 also brought up an excellent point. If Kaepernick was so good, he would be on an NFL roster. We constantly see players charged with abuse or drug related charges, but if they're good enough, teams tend make exceptions and put them on their respective rosters. Also, what about the other players who have taken a knee during the National Anthem? All of them seem to have kept their jobs. Why is Kaepernick so different?

The reason is that Kaepernick's politics are so radically to the Left that the media can identify with him. Because of that, he has become the media's cause of the moment.

So, is the Kaepernick issue a matter of media perception, where everyone is advocating for him getting a job except the one person who should be advocating for him having a job? I’m, of course, talking about Kaepernick himself. Or could this issue simply be a case that Kaepernick simply isn't that good?

Judging by the numbers, and what these anonymous executives have said, the answer is most likely the latter.

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