After taking over for Blaine Gabbert midway through last season, Colin Kaepernick found a favorite target in wide receiver Jeremy Kerley.
Kaepernick took aim at Kerley 68 times and connected 37 times for 345 yards and one touchdown.
A year later, neither is with the 49ers. Kaepernick remains unsigned while Kerley signed with the Jets after being released by San Francisco.
Recently, Kerley spoke to the New York Daily News about whether Kaepernick is being blackballed by the league.
"If I was Colin Kaepernick, if I was in his shoes, I would probably feel like I was being blackballed. But I'm not him. I'm not in his shoes. So, I just think it sucks. It sucks for him, because he's good enough to be on a football team. He can definitely help someone's team being a backup or potentially being a starter. So, I am shocked, definitely," Kerley said.
Kerley addressed the fact that Kaepernick remains unsigned.
"It's a helpless feeling. It's an unfortunate feeling. You almost feel like you're worthless. You know what I mean? At the same time, Colin has a strong mindset. That's one thing I respect about him. He has a strong mindset. I'm pretty sure that he knows that he can play in this league. He knows what he can do. At the end of the day, some stuff is just out of your control. He can't control being on a team right now. It's not like you can just force your way in and be on a team," Kerley said.
"It's unfortunate. I don't necessarily say it's sad. I don't necessarily say it's bad for this person or that person. It's just unfortunate, because I know the dude wants to play football," Kerley added.
Kerley also took to task the theory that Kaepernick remains unsigned because he would be a distraction in whichever locker room he entered.
"Believe it or not, it was no distraction. He caused no distraction. No distraction at all. … Every time he talked to the media, it was almost like he made sure that he kind of did it off to the side. He didn't bring any attention to himself or to the team. I respected him a lot," Kerley said.
When asked if his former teammate will be picked up by an NFL team at some point, Kerley is holding out hope.
"I feel like he deserves it. But it's just crazy how that goes," Kerley said.