NFL Changes Colin Kaepernick Status From “Retired” to “UFA” After Backlash

Kaepernick's girlfriend Nessa Diab called out the NFL for saying the QB was "retired"

Kaepernick NFL retired
Colin Kaepernick looks on during his NFL workout held at Charles R Drew high school on November 16, 2019 in Riverdale, Georgia.
Carmen Mandato/Getty Images
By Luis Paez-Pumar / May 24, 2020 12:09 pm

Of all the plot twists in the Colin Kaepernick saga, Saturday’s might be the most bizarre. After the quarterback’s girlfriend complained on Twitter, the NFL website has changed Kaepernick’s status on its official page from “retired” to “unrestricted free agent.

Radio host and activist Nessa Diab was first made aware of the “retired” tag on Friday, after a Twitter user found it and brought it to the attention of the wider NFL world. Diab then doubled up on it, tweeting her own call to change the status:

That tweet raised an uproar, as Kaepernick has never said that he is retired, despite being out of the league for three years. Though it seems unlikely that an NFL team will give him a chance with that long of a layoff on top of the league’s seeming reluctance to hire him due to his activism and police brutality protests, the website labeling him as “retired” was a step too far.

That step was corrected on Saturday, with the NFL changing his status back to active, labeling him as an “UFA,” meaning he could still sign with whatever team offers him a contract. Diab tweeted the update on Saturday, telling fans to continue to hold the league accountable for not employing the quarterback:

As of now, there has not been any reporting of a team looking to hire Kaepernick, though every offseason, rumors do pop up whenever a team needs a QB either in a starting slot or a back-up slot. For now, at least the league is no longer saying that he is retired, and that seems to be a win for all involved.

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