(CBS SF) — Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick will hold a private workout for a number of NFL teams, nearly three years after he last played in the league.
Kaepernick tweeted Tuesday that the NFL reached out to his representatives about holding the workout and stated, “I’ve been in shape and ready for this for 3 years, can’t wait to see the head coaches and GMs on Saturday.”
I’m just getting word from my representatives that the NFL league office reached out to them about a workout in Atlanta on Saturday. I’ve been in shape and ready for this for 3 years, can’t wait to see the head coaches and GMs on Saturday.
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) November 13, 2019
ESPN reporter Adam Schefter first reported the NFL arranged the workout and invited all 32 clubs to attend Saturday in Atlanta.
NFL clubs were informed today that a private workout will be held for Colin Kaepernick on Saturday in Atlanta. Session will include on-field work and an interview. All clubs are invited to attend, and video of both the workout and interview will be made available to clubs.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 12, 2019
The report said all NFL teams received the following memo about Kaepernick from the league: “Earlier this year, we discussed some possible steps with his representatives and they recently emphasized his level of preparation and that he is ready to work out for clubs and be interviewed by them. We have therefore arranged this opportunity for him to work out, and for all clubs to have the opportunity to evaluate his current readiness and level of interest in resuming his NFL career.”
Kaepernick has maintained the league blackballed him for protesting police brutality and racial injustice by taking a knee during the playing of the national anthem before games. Both he and former teammate Eric Reid, who kneeled alongside Kaepernick, alleged NFL owners colluded to deny them opportunities to play in the league. The two filed grievances against the league and in February, they and the NFL reached a settlement with terms undisclosed.
The 32-year-old Kaepernick has not played in the NFL since Jan. 1, 2017, opting out of his contract with the 49ers in March 2017. Reid is now in his second season with the Carolina Panthers.
“I think it would have to be a very brave owner who’s willing to break ranks from his 31 brethren, and to say, ‘Screw it, I need a backup quarterback,” said Ray Ratto, analyst at sports radio station 95.7 The Game.
Since leaving the league, Kaepernick became a pitch man for Nike in a “Just Do It” advertising campaign that was awarded an Emmy for outstanding commercial. He has continued to host charitable events and advocate for social justice issues while maintaining a workout regimen in the hopes of landing on a team.
In August, Kaepernick posted a video on social media saying he has been working out five days a week for three years in preparation for another opportunity to play in the league.
5am. 5 days a week. For 3 years. Still Ready. pic.twitter.com/AGczejA1rM
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) August 7, 2019
“I think it would have to be a very brave owner who’s willing to break ranks from his 31 brethren, and to say, ‘Screw it, I need a backup quarterback,” said Ray Ratto of 95.7 The Game, who predicted that Kaepernick won’t be employed by the NFL any time soon.
”I think this is going to end up with a lot of sound and fury for a guy probably good enough to play in the league, but is not going to get the chance,” Ratto said.
“My children have actually thrown out his jerseys,” said football fan Manny Cuevas. “I don’t wish him harm, I just hope the NFL stands for what they believe in and keep it at that.”
But 49ers fan Sam Smith disagrees.
“I support him,” he said. “I think he’s awarded the opportunity, I really do.”
During his six-year career with the 49ers, Kaepernick amassed 12,271 passing yards, 72 touchdowns and 30 interceptions in 69 career games. He also rushed for 2,300 yards and 13 touchdowns while setting records for most rushing yards by a quarterback in a single game (181 yards) and most rushing yards by a quarterback in a single postseason (264 yards).
KPIX 5 reporter Maria Medina contributed to this story.