Free-agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick has filed a grievance under the latest collective bargaining agreement against NFL owners for collusion, according to his attorney, Mark Geragos.
Kaepernick is not going through the NFL Players Association but has instead hired Geragos, who has represented several high-profile clients, including Michael Jackson, former NASCAR driver Jeremy Mayfield and musician Chris (the dude who beat his girlfriend - ed.) Brown.
The filing, which demands an arbitration hearing on the matter, says the NFL and its owners "have colluded to deprive Mr. Kaepernick of employment rights in retaliation for Mr. Kaepernick's leadership and advocacy for equality and social justice and his bringing awareness to peculiar institutions still undermining racial equality in the United States."
Nice spin. Another way of saying it is "Mr. Kaepernick's services are unwanted due to his skill set not being a match for any team's vacancies at this particular time." Besides, it seems pretty obvious that providing concrete evidence of collusion (assuming such activities exist or ever existed) is a mighty tall order.
Naturally there will be the perpetual arguments from Kaepernick apologists which say that Kap's ability is superior to more than half the QBs on an NFL roster today. But such a claim is totally subjective. About a month ago I went on record as saying that Kaepernick would be a better option at backup QB for my Vikings than Case Keenum. However, now that Keenum has been pressed into service over the past several weeks due to starter Sam Bradford being out with an injury, circumstances have changed. Keenum now has had valuable experience within the Vikings' current offensive system, so he is now better suited than Kap to be on the Vikings' roster. But, again, I would be perfectly fine if Kaepernick were brought in for a workout. I have a hard time imagining he's not a better option to be the Vikes' backup than current #2 Kyle Sloter.
All that being said, teams can actually refuse Kaepernick's services due to potential negative public relations that may occur upon his signing. So even if Kap is more talented than a number of active quarterbacks, NFL teams are well within their rights to gauge how much of a distraction they want to take on when signing a controversial figure.
In the end, I can't really blame Kaepernick for this proverbial "Hail Mary" given that he'll be 30 years old in a couple of weeks. In football terms, that means a QB is typically in the back end of his career. I'm guessing even a third stringer in the NFL makes more than, say, his next potential vocation of being an adjunct professor teaching Social Welfare at Cal-Berkeley.