Colin Kaepernick

Eagles send high-ranking official to Colin Kaepernick’s workout

Eagles send high-ranking official to Colin Kaepernick’s workout

According to those who attended Colin Kaepernick’s workout in Atlanta on Saturday, the Eagles were well represented.

The Eagles could have sent a regional or a low level scout to watch Kaepernick, but instead, they sent vice president of football operations Andrew Berry, which seems noteworthy.

On Friday, head coach Doug Pederson was asked if the Eagles would be in attendance at the workout.

“I would assume that we would,” Pederson said. “Obviously for us, we're in season so I can't be there. I’m comfortable with the guys we have, but I'm assuming that we would have somebody there.”

Pederson might be comfortable with the quarterbacks the Eagles have now, but it makes sense that the Eagles would at least take a look at Kaepernick. While Carson Wentz will be in Philly for a long time, his backups — Josh McCown and Nate Sudfeld — are both set to be unrestricted free agents after this season is up.

McCown will be 41 at the beginning of the 2020 season and Sudfeld has attempted just 25 career passes. The Eagles also have Kyle Lauletta on their practice squad.

Philadelphia, more than any other NFL city, should realize how important the backup quarterback position can be. Sure, maybe Kaepernick gets a crack at a starting job, but after three years out of the league, that’s certainly not a given. And the Eagles, with their progressive owner, might just be willing to sign Kaepernick despite potential backlash. Or maybe this leads nowhere.

Despite a last-minute move to a location 60 miles away from the Falcons’ facility, Berry and a few representatives from other NFL teams still made it to the workout.

The whole workout on Saturday was seemingly thrown together hastily and was organized by two sides that clearly have a contentious relationship. There were plenty of issues between them, including ones about the liability waiver, media availability and video footage. The move happened 15 minutes before the workout was scheduled to happen.

After the workout, Kaepernick explained why the move happened:

The NFL on Saturday released a statement saying it was “disappointed that Colin did not appear for his workout.” He didn’t appear for the workout at the Falcons’ facility, but the 32-year-old quarterback did appear at the high school sight in Georgia and apparently looked good.

The Eagles pride themselves on searching everywhere for talent and evaluating all options. Kaepernick is certainly an option. Of course, there’s a lot more to the Kaepernick story than a former Pro Bowl quarterback looking for a new team. The NFL in February settled a collusion grievance with Kaepernick and his former teammate Eric Reid. And Kaepernick hasn’t played since 2016, claiming collusion after he began a series of protests over social and racial injustice in the United States. He famously kneeled during the national anthem before games.

It’ll be interesting to see if this workout leads anywhere for Kaepernick or if the Eagles would actually pursue him. For the rest of this season, the Eagles are in a good spot when it comes to the quarterback position, but when this year is over, it’s more questionable. That’s probably why they looked at Kaepernick today.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

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Does it make sense for the Eagles to pursue Colin Kaepernick?

Does it make sense for the Eagles to pursue Colin Kaepernick?

Every time a quarterback gets hurt, Colin Kaepernick is the first name that comes up.

Kaepernick once led the 49ers to the Super Bowl and nearly led them to another, and there aren't a lot of Super Bowl quarterbacks in their prime who aren't currently on NFL rosters.

And with Nate Sudfeld now out indefinitely with a broken wrist and Carson Wentz’s injury history, why not here?

Many reasons. Many, many reasons. Here's a few of them:

1. They don’t need him: The Eagles don’t need a starting quarterback. They just signed Wentz to a long-term deal worth over $25 million per year, and Kaepernick has been clear that he’s not going to sign anywhere without a chance to compete for a starting position. That just isn’t going to happen here. This is a short-term opening. Sudfeld should be back somewhere around Week 4 through Week 6. 

2. He’s too expensive: It’s been widely reported Kaepernick is looking for something around $10 million per year, and there’s no way the Eagles are going to invest anywhere close to that kind of money on a backup quarterback who would become the No. 3 quarterback in September or October. They like Sudfeld long term as a No. 2 and he showed why Thursday night before he got hurt.

3. He hasn’t played in 950 DAYS: Kaepernick hasn’t played one snap of football since the end of the 2016 season — Jan. 1, 2017, in a 49ers loss to the Seahawks. He hasn't even been in a camp since then. I’m sure he keeps himself in great shape, and the video he posted earlier this week shows him working out diligently. But no matter how fit you are, someone who hasn’t played football in three YEARS — hasn’t even practiced — is going to need a lot of time to get into football shape and teach their body to play football again. Think about how long it took Michael Vick to get into football shape when he signed here after a two-year layoff. Even if they signed Kaepernick today, by the time he learned the offense, got into football shape and developed familiarity with the Eagles’ receivers, Sudfeld would be back.

4. He’s six years removed from his last elite season: Kaepernick won just 11 of 35 starts his last three years in San Francisco, and his last winning season was in 2013, when he was 25. He wasn’t terrible his last three years with the 49ers, but his 85.9 passer rating ranked 26th of 35 QBs during that three-year span who threw at least 500 passes.

5. He doesn’t fit this offense: This is an offense predicated on a quarterback being accurate, having a high completion percentage, using all his weapons, going through his progressions and making the right read. Kaepernick’s career completion percentage is below 60 percent. Since he entered the league in 2011, he’s completed 59.8 percent of his passes, and among 25 quarterbacks who’ve thrown 1,500 passes since 2011 he ranks 22nd out of 25 in completion percentage. He’s always helped himself with his running ability — 2,300 yards and a 6.1 average in six seasons — but at 31 it’s not likely he’d be as effective as a runner. 

6. Malcolm Jenkins: Malcolm Jenkins is an unquestioned leader on this football team and has been since he got here. Kaepernick and his former teammate Eric Reid found themselves at odds with Jenkins on issues regarding the Players Coalition that negotiated with the NFL to try and resolve social justice concerns NFL players had with the league. Reid went as far as calling Jenkins a "sell-out" for negotiating a social justice partnership with the league, a characterization that Kaepernick supported. It's certainly possible Jenkins, Reid and Kaepernick have reconciled since, but would the Eagles risk creating a locker room schism involving one of their best and most popular players? I can't imagine.

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Malcolm Jenkins reacts to settlement in Colin Kaepernick collusion case

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USA Today Images

Malcolm Jenkins reacts to settlement in Colin Kaepernick collusion case

In the wake of news that the NFL had settled collusion cases brought forth by Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid, fellow activist and Eagle Malcolm Jenkins has weighed in. 

Despite some disagreements between the men in the past, Jenkins has always maintained that Kaepernick and Reid belonged in the league and thought NFL owners colluded to keep Kaepernick and Reid out of the NFL. 

Reid is now employed by the Carolina Panthers, but Kaepernick hasn’t played in the NFL since 2016. 

You’ll remember in October, Jenkins and Reid got into a heated exchange before the Eagles-Panthers game at the Linc. And after the game, Reid called Jenkins a sellout and a coward (see story).  

That day, Jenkins refused to get into a war of words. 

"I would never get up here and say anything bad about somebody who I know [their] intentions were about helping their communities, especially another black man," Jenkins said on Oct. 21, after the game. "I'll leave it at that."

The exchange between Jenkins and Reid that day stemmed from lingering animosity about the way the Players Coalition — led by Jenkins — brokered a $90 million deal with the NFL to help with projects dealing with racial inequality. 

On Friday afternoon, the NFL released the following statement: 

"For the past several months, counsel for Mr. Kaepernick and Mr. Reid have engaged in an ongoing dialogue with representatives of the NFL. As a result of those discussions, the parties have decided to resolve the pending grievances. The resolution of this matter is subject to a confidentiality agreement so there will be no further comment by any party."

Because of the confidentiality agreement, we don’t know how much this settlement is worth, but it’s likely to be very significant. It’s also unclear if the NFL admitted any wrongdoing in the settlement. 

The grievances began when Kaepernick and Reid claimed they had been blacklisted by the NFL for demonstrating during the national anthem. Kaepernick began those protests by sitting and then later taking a knee. 

Jenkins raised his fist during the anthem but stopped once his Players Coalition brokered that deal in 2017. Jenkins raised his fist in the Eagles’ preseason opener in 2018, but did not during the 2018 season. Jenkins has said many times he wants the focus to be on work in the community and not the demonstrations. 

A tweet earlier on Friday falls in line with that. 

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