Colin Kaepernick is finally drawing some interest — this time from the Seahawks — on the free agent market. Seattle envisions him as a backup to Russell Wilson, but the man who’s training him says Kaepernick is in peak physical condition and ready to be a starting quarterback again.
“I would just ask any team wondering anything about Colin: Come and see him,” Josh Hidalgo said, via The MMQB’s Peter King. “Come to the gym. Talk to him. They’ll see he’s in as good shape as a quarterback can be in. He’s ready to lead a team.”
Kaepernick opted out his contract with the San Francisco 49ers after the 2016 season. Despite a number of quarterback-needy teams around the league, he hasn’t found a new NFL home. The Seahawks are reportedly interested. It would be a great fit, and he’d be an above-average backup capable of keeping the team competitive if Wilson couldn’t play.
Hidalgo says Kaepernick isn’t training like a backup.
“Colin has been there since January, training with me five days a week,” Hidalgo said. “We have been getting ready for football as if he was a starting quarterback for an NFL team. When I read that people don’t know if Colin wants to play football … This guy’s been doing it five hours a day, five days a week, like he has a starting NFL job. And we don’t take days off.”
Kaepernick’s social activism, and specifically his decision to not stand for the national anthem last season, is a likely reason that teams are avoiding him. Kaepernick has said he will stand for the anthem this season, but he still isn’t signed.
Hidalgo points out the hypocrisy there.
“I just can’t believe people are so concerned about what he does off the field,” Hidalgo said. “You got guys going to clubs and doing all these other things off the field. The concern is that he’s helping people?
“He breathes football. He breathes helping people. Those are two qualities I want in the leader of my football team.”
Kaepernick played in 12 games for the Niners last season, finishing with 2,241 yards and 16 touchdowns against just four interceptions.