ESPN’s Adam Schefter says that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell wanted to schedule a workout for Colin Kaepernick because he “feels bad,” about the way the situation involving the former anthem protester has been handled.
“I think Roger Goodell, there’s a part of him, the Commissioner, that feels bad about the way that this has unfolded,” Schefter said on Wednesday. “And I think that he believes that he must do his part to try to get a workout for Colin Kaepernick, to try to get interviews with Colin Kaepernick, to try to do his part to get Colin Kaepernick in front of teams.”
On Tuesday, it was announced that former San Francisco 49ers quarterback and originator of the protest during the national anthem, was being allowed to perform a workout to show teams that he is still in playing condition.
But the workout is a strange beast considering that it is being sponsored by the league, not any particular team, and that it was scheduled without Kaepernick’s foreknowledge or participation in the planning stage.
Schefter went on to note that even as Commissioner Goodell can’t force any particular team to hire Kaepernick, this workout is seen as the league giving him every opportunity to land a job.
The workout, Schefter says, “is the league office stepping in to try to make sure that Colin Kaepernick . . . has a chance to show to teams what he can’t do, what he can do, what his level of interest is in returning, how much he’d like to be back in football. And, again, the NFL can’t make a team sign him I don’t think, but it can arrange something like this that really turns into Colin Kaepernick’s Pro Day.”
Some football commentators have even speculated that Saturday’s Kaepernick workout is an attempt by Goodell to get ahead of any possible lawsuit alleging that the league is conspiring behind the scenes to prevent teams from signing him. If Goodell sponsors this workout, the thinking goes, he can’t be accused of working to keep Kaepernick on the sidelines.
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