Now that Colin Kaepernick has settled his lawsuit against the NFL, his most ardent fans — his lawyer among them — are eying the possibility of the the quarterback returning to resume his once-promising career.
After all, before Kaepernick was best known for kneeling during the National Anthem to protest racism, he was the budding star with a 17-5 record and a Super Bowl appearance in 2012-13.
New York Daily News columnist Manish Mehta, however, is sacking that idea.
“Put aside whether owners actually colluded against the Kaepernick — or why he would agree to settle if he had a smoking gun — and here’s what’s left: He is not a starting-caliber NFL quarterback anymore,” wrote Mehta.
Some of that damage is self-inflicted: Kaepernick opted out of his contract with the 49ers, reportedly turned down an opportunity in the CFL, and apparently demanded $20 million to play in the start-up Alliance of American Football— a league that gives its players three-year, $250,000 non-guaranteed contracts.
But Kaepernick had been on a downward trend for his last few years on the field, too. He couldn’t mature into more of a pocket passer, and his cumulative quarterback rating (52.0) in 2015-16, the last two seasons in which he played, ranked 30th out of 32 quarterbacks.
“It’s silly to suggest that Kaepernick wasn’t good enough in the past two years to be on an NFL roster, but let’s get a grip on reality now,” writes Mehta. “His star on the field flickered out before he opted out of his contract with the 49ers in March 2017.”