Minnesota Vikings

Jets' Jamal Adams once called 49ers' defensive front 'a DB's dream'

Jets' Jamal Adams once called 49ers' defensive front 'a DB's dream'

New York Jets standout safety Jamal Adams has demanded a trade, and the 49ers reportedly are on the shortlist of teams that he would welcome a trade to. There likely are several reasons for that, but at least one seems readily apparent.

While the 49ers were marching their way through the NFC playoffs, Adams and the Jets were stuck at home after a 7-9 regular season and a third-place finish in the AFC East. It would appear Adams tuned in to watch San Francisco's divisional-round win over the Minnesota Vikings because he came away extremely impressed with the performance of the 49ers' defensive front in that game.

In beating Minnesota 27-10, the 49ers limited the Vikings to just 21 total rushing yards, sacked quarterback Kirk Cousins six times and intercepted him once. It was a thoroughly dominant defensive performance, and clearly, Adams liked what he saw.

49ers cornerback Richard Sherman can directly speak to the benefit of playing behind such a dominant front and responded to Adams with his own testimony.

[RELATED: Why 49ers should rectify mistake, trade for Jets' Adams]

Though it's unlikely to occur for a number of reasons, Adams would be a dream acquisition for San Francisco. Apparently, the feeling is mutual.

[49ERS INSIDER PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Vikings linebackers rip NFL's statement after George Floyd's death

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Vikings linebackers rip NFL's statement after George Floyd's death

The NFL's statement in the wake of George Floyd's death in police custody drew criticism from around the sports world, with Minnesota Vikings linebackers Eric Kendricks and Anthony Barr being the latest to condemn the league for its hypocrisy.

Both linebackers sent a series of identical tweets condemning the league's statement and lack of past action and asking for help to enact change.

While the NFL's statement claims it is looking to address the systemic issues together, that flies in the face of their treatment of former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, Kaepernick began kneeling during the national anthem in 2016 in protest of police brutality against African-Americans. Kaepernick last played in the NFL in 2016. After opting out of his contract with the 49ers, he was not signed by another team and he has alleged that NFL owners conspired to keep him out of the league. Kaepernick settled a collusion lawsuit with the NFL in 2019.

Kaepernick's peaceful protest has received renewed attention in the wake of Floyd's death in police custody as citizens march across the United States to protest police brutality and systemic racism.

Floyd, a 46-year old African-American man died in police custody and citizens filmed Derek Chauvin, a white Minneapolis police officer placing his knee on Floyd's neck for over eight minutes. Floyd told Chauvin and the three other officers who were watching that he couldn't breathe and asked Chauvin to let up, but Chauvin kept his knee pressed into Floyd's neck for over three minutes after he became unconscious. It was later announced Floyd died in police custody. Chauvin was arrested Friday and will be charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. The other officers have not been arrested but still could face charges.

While the NFL's statement was tone-deaf, several organizations from around the sports world have given thoughtful statements and put their money where their mouth is.

49ers owner Jed York donated $1 million to organizations dedicated to social change.

"We started some social justice work and using that term when Colin started his protest," York told NFL Media's Jim Trotter. "I think we'd always been working in this area but it was clear to label it social justice. ... I think the piece that we missed in 2016, and it's a fairly simple piece, I don't know if anybody actually addressed what the issue was, and we're trying to fight racism in this country.

"I think that's what we need to clearly call out, and you can't defeat something if you can't admit that's actually what you're fighting." 

[RELATED: Jackson insists Kap owed apology by 'fake' NFL]

Raiders owner Mark Davis issued a powerful statement condemning the "murder" of Floyd and has been meeting with officials in Henderson, Nevada to listen, learn and try to be part of positive change.

"If they have something to say, I'll stand beside them," Davis told ESPN. "I won't stand behind them. I'll stand beside them. And if there's something I don't know, I'm happy to listen to them. We've got to find a solution."

Steph Curry, Chris Long and Steve Kerr all have called for white people to get uncomfortable, speak up and be part of the solution. Kerr and Long both spoke on the importance of star white quarterbacks like Tom Brady, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers speaking out on the matter. 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman echoed the importance of white quarterbacks speaking up at this moment.

The criticism of the NFL is warranted given their treatment of Kaepernick, Eric Reid and others who knelt to protest police brutality and systemic racism. Kaepernick's protest wasn't accepted by the league as it should have been. His action was born out of the desire to enact change. He not only sacrificed his career (to this point) but he also has donated more than $1 million to organizations fighting for social change. The NFL could have listened, acknowledge and amplified Kaepernick's message. Instead, it chose to do the opposite.

The statement itself was tone-deaf and their inaction in the fight against systemic racism will always be louder than four paragraphs on a tweet.

[49ERS INSIDER PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Vikings should sign Colin Kaepernick to contract, ex-NFL exec believes

Vikings should sign Colin Kaepernick to contract, ex-NFL exec believes

With the recent events in Minnesota, Louisville and other parts of the United States, former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick is back in the news.

It has become clear that Kaepernick's message from his protests during the national anthem in the 2017 NFL season didn't take hold.

The deaths of George Floyd in Minneapolis this week, and Breonna Taylor in Louisville in March have led to protests all over the country.

In a column posted Saturday, former NFL executive and current CNN political analyst, Joe Lockhart, said the league attempted to convince teams to sign Kaepernick in 2017 and 2018, and he felt they had "done a righteous job."

Based on the events in Minnesota this week, Lockhart now realizes how wrong he was.

In an attempt to right a wrong, Lockhart believes the Minnesota Vikings should sign Kaepernick to a contract and give him a legitimate chance to compete for the backup quarterback spot in training camp.

"The situation in Minnesota right now offers a unique opportunity to deal with the symbols of racial injustice," Lockhart wrote. "As a small, but important step, the owners of the Minnesota Vikings, Zygi and Mark Wilf, can send a strong message by offering Colin Kaepernick a contract to play with the Vikings. Bring him into camp, treat him like any of the other players given a chance to play the game they love.

"It will not solve the problem of blacks and police violence. But it will recognize the problem that Kaepernick powerfully raised, and perhaps show that, with courage, real progress can be made."

[49ERS INSIDER PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

Kaepernick hasn't played in the NFL since 2016 and opted out of his contract in March of 2017 after the 49ers told him they planned to release him.

Last year, Kaepernick worked out in Atlanta, but no NFL team signed him.

While Kaepernick arguably is more talented than most backup quarterbacks and even a few starters, he has remained unsigned since leaving the 49ers. Lockhart claims NFL commissioner Roger Goodell spent a lot of time "prodding and pushing" teams to sign the former second-round pick. No one followed through, and Lockhart explained why.

"But for many owners it always came back to the same thing," Lockhart wrote. "Signing Kaepernick, they thought, was bad for business. An executive from one team that considered signing Kaepernick told me the team projected losing 20 [percent] of their season ticket holders if they did. That was a business risk no team was willing to take, whether the owner was a Trump supporter or a bleeding-heart liberal (yes, those do exist).

"As bad of an image problem it presented for the league and the game, no owner was willing to put the business at risk over this issue."

[RELATED: NFL briefly lists Kap as 'retired']

The only way Lockhart's suggestion can work is if the Vikings give Kaepernick a real shot to compete to be Kirk Cousins' backup. Even though he hasn't played the last three NFL seasons, Kaepernick has more natural talent than Jake Browning, Sean Mannion and Nate Stanley, the three other quarterbacks on the Vikings' roster.

Kaepernick deserves another shot to play in the NFL. If the Vikings want to make that happen, great. But it cannot be a PR move.

[SPORTS UNCOVERED: Listen to the latest episode]