NFL Teams Invited to Colin Kaepernick Private Workout

Free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who claimed the NFL and its teams colluded to keep him from playing following his refusal to stand during the National Anthem, will take part Saturday in a private workout organized by the league.

The NFL sent a memo Tuesday to its 32 teams, saying the session will include on-field work and interview time with the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, ESPN first reported.

The workout will take place at an undisclosed location in Atlanta, a source with direct knowledge of the arrangement has told CNN. Clubs that don’t attend in person will have access to video of the session. The event will be closed to media.

Kaepernick tweeted about the development on Tuesday night.

“I’m just getting word from my representatives that the NFL league office reached out to them about a workout in Atlanta on Saturday,” he tweeted. “I’ve been in shape and ready for this for 3 years, can’t wait to see the head coaches and GMs on Saturday.”

According to the source, several NFL teams inquired about the athlete-turned-activist’s “football readiness” and desire to return to the league.

Kaepernick hasn’t played in the league since the 2016 season—the same season he first sat during the playing of the National Anthem.

The protest later evolved into kneeling after onetime Seattle Seahawk and Green Beret Nate Boyer convinced Kaepernick it would be more respectful to the nation’s military, the quarterback has said.

Kaepernick said he did so to protest police brutality, which drew widespread backlash and boycott threats.

Colin Kaepernick kneels in protest during the national anthem in 2016.
Colin Kaepernick #7 and Eric Reid #35 of the San Francisco 49ers kneel in protest during the national anthem prior to playing the Los Angeles Rams in their NFL game at Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara, Calif., on Sept. 12, 2016. (Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Kaepernick became a free agent in 2017. No team offered him a contract, and that October, he filed a grievance against the league, accusing team owners of colluding to keep him from being signed.

The NFL denied any collusion. Kaepernick and former teammate Eric Reid, who knelt with Kaepernick, settled their cases.

Earlier this year, Kaepernick posted videos of himself on Twitter, taking part in weight training and throwing footballs.

ESPN reported it has seen the memo which was sent to teams informing them of the workout.

Kaepernick, who led the 49ers to the 2013 Super Bowl, played his last game on Jan. 1, 2017, in the 49ers’ loss to the Seattle Seahawks.

Now former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick passes against the Oakland Raiders during a game in Oakland, Calif., on Dec. 7, 2014. (Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP Photo)

During that season, in which the 49ers were 2-14, Kaepernick threw 16 touchdowns and had four interceptions. He rushed for 468 yards on 69 attempts.

He opted out of his contract after the season and has been a free agent since.

‘False Narratives’

Last month, Kaepernick’s representatives sent out a letter of “facts” to counter “false narratives” about the player.

“Not a single team has brought Colin in for a workout,” their statement said. “Seattle brought Colin in for a visit but did not work him out. … No other NFL team has interviewed or worked out Colin in the past three seasons, despite other false statements to the media to the contrary.” The Seahawks incident took place in April of 2018.

The letter said that the rumors about Kaepernick demanding a specific salary are “completely false,” and they added that the notion he doesn’t want to play is wrong.

They also argued that the former University of Nevada standout has been “working out 5 days a week, for 3 years, in preparation to play again.”

Epoch Times reporter Jack Phillips contributed to this report.

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