Colin Kaepernick may be back in the NFL with New England Patriots or Carolina Panthers, says lawyer
Lawyer Mark Geragos, representing the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, is confident that his client will be given a way back into the NFL.
The lawyer representing controversial NFL star Colin Kaepernick, 31, believes his client has a good chance of getting back into the football league as the New England Patriots and the Carolina Panthers could be interested in hiring him.
The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback reached a settlement with the NFL on Friday over a lawsuit he had filed against the 32 franchise owners in the league. The 31-year-old, who became a free agent almost two years ago, accused the owners in his lawsuit of colluding to keep him out of the league, Newsweek reports.
In 2016, the former Wisconsin student faced severe backlash after he knelt during the national anthem in a bid to protest police brutality against African Americans and social injustice.
Several conservative pundits along with President Donald Trump castigated him at the time for his gesture, which they considered disrespectful.
Mark Geragos, his lawyer, told CNN on Saturday that his client's dry spell could be coming to an end, especially after reaching a settlement with the NFL. “I’m going to make a bold prediction that one of three teams picks him up,” he said. “The natural would be if Cam Newton is out, then the natural place would be to play with Eric [Reid] in Carolina.”
Being one of the first players to support Kaepernick's protest, Reid also struggled to find a team after becoming a free agent at the end of the 2017 season. The 49ers star who played alongside Kaepernick was the 18th overall pick of the 2013 draft.
Reid was eventually handed an entry back into the league in September last year, when he was signed by the Carolina Panthers as a free agent.
Just like Kaepernick, he also reached a settlement with the NFL over a grievance filed on his behalf by the NFL Players’ Association in May 2018.
In a conversation with ESPN last month, Panthers' owner David Tepper said Cam Newton might have to take a year off from playing owing to a second shoulder surgery that is scheduled to take place in the coming months.
During the conversation, Tepper referenced the example of Andrew Luck, the Colts quarterback, who sat out the 2017 campaign but was back to his best form last season after recovering fully.
If Newton follows Tepper's advice, the Panthers will need a replacement to fill the vacancy under center and may rope in Kaepernick, Geragos said. That said, he also claimed the former 49ers quarterback could be looking at even better opportunities.
“Besides the Panthers, it would not surprise me if [New England Patriots owner] Bob Kraft makes a move,” he explained. “That would not surprise me.”
Geragos' interview was then cut off before he could reveal the identity of the third franchise that would be interested in Kaepernick.
While Kraft is a staunch supporter of Trump, he was also markedly critical of the way the US commander-in-chief handled the NFL protests. However, it remains to be seen if Kaepernick can land a position with the Patriots.
Tom Brady has insisted that he wants to play until his 45th birthday, so the six-time Super Bowl winners may not immediately need a quarterback to replace him.