It has been four years, but Colin Kaepernick is back in a "Madden" game. The latest update to "Madden 21" includes Kaepernick being added to the free agents list. He was given an 81 rating by EA Sports, which is good enough to make Kaepernick "in the top 15 of the video game's 111 total quarterbacks," according to The Undefeated.
EA Sports also gave Kaepernick his own, signature touchdown celebration -- a raised fist. With a player rating of 81, the QB is ranked higher than these notable signal-callers:
"Colin Kaepernick is one of the top free agents in football and a starting-caliber quarterback. The team at EA SPORTS, along with millions of Madden NFL fans, want to see him back in our game," EA Sports explained on Twitter. "Knowing that our EA SPORTS experiences are platforms for players to create, we want to make Madden NFL a place that reflects Colin's position and talent, rates him as a starting QB, and empowers our fans to express their hopes for the future of football. We've worked with Colin to make this possible, and we're excited to bring it to all of you today."
Kaepernick has a long history with EA Sports' premier football gaming franchise, and has appeared in commercials for the games in the past. The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback was last playable in "Madden 17." As The Undefeated pointed out, nine days after the game's release, Kaepernick first took a stance against racial injustice by choosing not to stand for the national anthem in a preseason game against the Houston Texans.
So, why is Kaepernick being put back in the "Madden" games now, three years later? According to EA Sports, when Kaepernick became a free agent after the 2016 season, the company lost the rights to create him in the games because the QB wasn't included in subsequent group licensing agreements with the NFL's Players Association.