The Las Vegas Raiders are set to give Colin Kaepernick his first real chance at a return to the NFL when they bring the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback in for a workout sometime this week.
Despite rumblings of interest from several organizations since Kaepernick left the league after the 2016 season, no NFL team has ever brought the Nevada alum in for an actual workout to prove his fitness to once again play in the league. However, that will change very soon.
On Wednesday, ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter broke the news that Colin Kaepernick will get his first official tryout with the Las Vegas Raiders this week.
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Las Vegas Raiders set to give Colin Kaepernick first real chance at NFL return
“Colin Kaepernick, who last played football in 2016, the same year he started kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial injustice, is scheduled to work out this week for the Las Vegas Raiders, league sources told ESPN,” Schefter wrote in a tweet.
As mentioned in Schefter’s tweet, the six-year veteran rose to a different level of social notoriety — or infamy to some — when he chose to publicly protest issues of racial injustice in the United States by kneeling during the playing of the national anthem before 49ers games. The decision cast him as a villain to certain traditionalists in and out of the league, and as a hero to a legion of others around the world.
Unfortunately for him, in the 11 games he started in 2016, the team lost all but one. With his status as a divisive among the fanbase and back-to-back seasons where the team lost more games than they won when he started, the team informed the quarterback they planned to release him. Instead, he opted out of his contract in March of 2017, however, no other team’s in the league decided to offer him an opportunity to join their roster that offseason. That has been his plight for the last five years.
Raiders owners threw support behind Kaepernick opportunity in April
Last month, Kaepernick revealed in an interview that he would be willing to serve as a backup on any NFL team. As long as they gave him a fair chance to earn a starting job eventually. Well, it seems the Las Vegas Raiders will take him up on that claim. He is now one step closer to seeing his unofficial exile from the league come to an end.
The Raiders giving Kaepernick this opportunity is not necessarily a surprise after comments team owner Mark Davis made to Sports Illustrated in April.
“I believe in Colin Kaepernick. He deserves every chance in the world to become a quarterback in the National Football League,” Davis said last month. “I still stand by it. If our coaches and general manager want to bring him in or want him to be the quarterback on this team, I would welcome him with open arms.”