For Richard Sherman, the issue with Colin Kaepernick comes down to one thing. “It’s not about football or color,” he told USA Today’s Jarrett Bell. “It’s about, ‘Boy, stay in your place.’”
Kaepernick has been a free agent since March 9. Since then, quarterbacks of lesser abilities such as Geno Smith, Mark Sanchez, Matt McGloin, Blaine Gabbert, Dan Orlovsky, and others have been signed. Only two teams have even taken the slightest sniff at Kaepernick since then — the Seahawks and (kind of but not really!) the Ravens.
“The funny thing about it, when you’re not being blackballed, you don’t have to say he’s not being blackballed,” Sherman said. “When football’s a safe game, you don’t have to say, ‘Football’s a safe game.’ It seems like the commissioner always has to say things to justify something.”
“But you didn’t even do this with Mike Vick,” Sherman added. “Vick came back and (eventually) got a $100 million deal.”
Bell also reported that Sherman was “a bit baffled” in his team not signing Kaepernick. By all accounts, Kaepernick’s visit with the Seahawks was “good.” However, the team ended up signing Austin Davis instead, who has started 10 games in his NFL career, winning three of those games.
Sherman also made sure to acknowledge that Kaepernick can still play the game at a high level. One of the biggest arguments used against Kaepernick is that he’s not good anymore, but Sherman quickly laid that to rest.
“He played in Chip (Kelly)’s system last year and went 16-4 (TD-to-INT ratio) on a bad team. He played well because he’s a good football player. He may not be the best, but he’s better than a lot of these dudes starting.”
He then named names. “Now if you told me this guy threw eight pick-sixes last year and played like a bum, had no talent, that’s one thing. But Ryan Fitzpatrick, Ryan Mallett or whoever is playing for the Jets right now — whoever is starting for the Jets is terrible — have jobs.” He also mentioned Kaepernick being better than Blake Bortles and Jared Goff.
All issues aside, Sherman advocated for others in the NFL to speak up on Kaepernick’s behalf. “Not a lot of guys are willing to step out there,” he said. “So the guys not speaking up for him are doing him a disservice.”
Sherman then brought up an interesting point. He mentioned his teammate Michael Bennett also being outspoken in favor of Kaepernick, and added, “but on our team it’s like, ‘They’re a bunch of hippies over there.’”
Bennett, who also spoke with Bell, brought home a major point that is often overlooked when it comes to Kaepernick’s situation.
“There are (accused) rapists and drunk drivers in the league,” Bennett said. “But he’s somebody who didn’t do anything to anybody.”