With a collusion grievance looming, NFL wants you to believe all is good with Kaepernick


With a collusion grievance looming, NFL wants you to believe all is good with Kaepernick

All of a sudden Colin Kaepernick is Football’s Most Desirable Prom Date again, and if I had to wager a guess it would be to forestall that potentially sloppy collusion grievance he and lawyer Mark Geragos have aimed at the NFL.

According to ESPN’s Jim Trotter, Kaepernick was texted by Troy Vincent, one of Roger Goodell’s chief lieutenants, with an eye toward a meeting with the shrapnel-riddled commissioner. The text was dated Hallowe’en, so make of that what you will, but according to NFL spokesman Joe Lockhart, the league has not yet heard from Kaepernick, Geragos or anyone else empowered to speak on his behalf.

Lockhart also said in a conference call that Kaepernick would be invited to a larger meeting about social issues and the league’s responses to them between owners, league officials and players.

In other words, The Invisible Man is suddenly wearing a DayGlo suit that can be seen from space, and the league that has almost gymnastically shunned him has suddenly decided that he is a member in good standing -- except of course for the players contract part.

It is unclear what a meeting with Goodell would gain him, since Goodell is not actually empowered to give him a place on a team and in any event already has his own political problems with some of the Billionaire Boys Club. The larger meeting would, in fact, be almost like a job fair for Kaepernick if both he and the owners in the room were inclined to treat it as such.

But those are a steeplechase race full of hurdles to clear, which brings us back to the principal motive for the meetings -- feeling out the collusion issue.

The NFL may not have been as dim as Major League Baseball’s owners were in the 1990s when they lost three separate collusion cases by leaving their paperwork about for all to see, but billionaires are not always careful about the forensics when they want something as badly as they seem to want Kaepernick to be an ex-player. This reach-out to Kaepernick by Goodell, if it is true, puts Goodell in an increasingly risky position viz. Jerry Jones, Danny Snyder, Bob McNair and the other ownership hardliners.

In other words, let us do the prudent thing and cool our jets on all this. There are other, invisible, shoes yet to drop, or not, and the best way to be wrong on a Colin Kaepernick story is to imagine that there is thawing in his relationship with the league that spurned him.

49ers claim outside linebacker off waivers from Patriots


49ers claim outside linebacker off waivers from Patriots

The 49ers on Wednesday were assigned outside linebacker Cassius Marsh off waivers from the New England Patriots.

The Patriots waived Marsh on Tuesday after acquiring him in September from the Seattle Seahawks in exchange for fifth- and seventh-round draft picks.

Marsh (6 foot 4, 245 pounds) appeared in 46 games in his four NFL seasons. Three of his four career sacks came in 2016 while with the Seahawks. He was Seattle's fourth-round pick in 2014.

Marsh is the second defensive player the 49ers have claimed off waivers this week. The club acquired former Jacksonville Jaguars defensive lineman Sheldon Day on Monday. The 49ers released defensive linemen Tony McDaniel and Datone Jones within the past week.

The 49ers are at their roster maximum of 53 players. The club will have to clear a roster spot if Tank Carradine, as expected, is activated off injured reserve in order to play Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks at Levi’s Stadium.

Who 49ers start at quarterback is the last thing on Pete Carroll's mind


Who 49ers start at quarterback is the last thing on Pete Carroll's mind

SANTA CLARA – Quarterback C.J. Beathard is expected to make his fifth consecutive start for the 49ers on Sunday, but Seattle coach Pete Carroll said his team will be prepared to face Jimmy Garoppolo, too.

“It really isn’t a factor,” Carroll said in a conference call with Bay Area reporters on Wednesday. “We’re just preparing for the 49ers. They got a style of offense. They got really good players who do what they do. And whoever’s triggering it from the quarterback spot, we’re going to go play football.

“We’ve seen Jimmy play. We’ve seen how he’s mobile and the kind of athlete and competitor he is. But other than that, we just go play football. We can’t do anything about that.”

Beathard remained on the sideline when the clubs met Sept. 17 in Seattle. The Seahawks have defeated the 49ers seven consecutive times, including a 12-9 victory in Week 2 this season. Quarterback Brian Hoyer started the 49ers’ first six games of the season and rushed for just 7 yards during that time. Beathard has 115 yards rushing on 20 attempts in Kyle Shanahan’s offense.

“He’s been mobile. He’s got a rushing average, you know,” Carroll said of Beathard. “He’s averaging 5-yards a carry and stuff. They’re incorporating him in the run game some that we have to be concerned about. That’s different than other quarterbacks at times. I’d think Jimmy can do the same stuff.

“He (Beathard) is getting more settled. You can see the offense growing. You can see Kyle able to expand and do more stuff. He’s an incredible offensive coordinator and play-caller that we’ve respected for a long time. I think they’re just grown and they’re getting more proficient at what they’re doing."