The 2019 NFL season has gotten off to a brutal start for the league's quarterbacks, who are dropping like flies.
Through just two weeks, we've already seen Ben Roethlisberger, Drew Brees and Nick Foles go down with serious injuries. Cam Newton might also end up missing a game in Week 3 due to a foot problem and Sam Darnold is expected to miss multiple games due to mononucleosis.
With so many quarterbacks going down, it seems that Colin Kaepernick is hoping the 2019 season will be the year that his unofficial blackballing from the NFL finally comes to an end. According to SportsNet New York, Kaepernick's agent has reached out to multiple teams this week in hopes of landing a job for his client.
Source close to @Kaepernick7 in light of all the QB injuries: “Colin is literally in the best shape of his life. He’s been working out 5 days a week at 5 am for 3 years. He wants to play and his agent has been contacting teams in need of a QB.”— Chris Williamson (@CWilliamson44) September 17, 2019
If you're wondering who Kaepernick's agent has reached out to, Stephen A. Smith has that answer. According to the ESPN commentator, Kaepernick's camp has contacted the Steelers, Jets and Saints.
Unfortunately for Kaepernick, though, it doesn't sound like those conversations went very well.
"I am being told that he has contacted -- Colin Kaepernick's agent and others -- have contacted the Pittsburgh Steelers," Smith said this week. "Essentially, they're not interested. They've contacted the Jets, no word on them yet. They've contacted the Saints. They didn't get their phone calls returned."
Ouch. That's 0-for-2 with the Jets door still slightly open.
Even worse for Kaepernick is the fact that all three of those teams have actually added a quarterback since Tuesday morning.
On the Saints end, they signed J.T. Barrett to their practice squad and he'll be their No. 3 guy behind Teddy Bridgewater and Taysom Hill. On the Steelers' end, the team added Paxton Lynch to their practice squad on Tuesday. As for the Jets, who are down to third-string quarterback Luke Falk, they reportedly signed David Fales on Wednesday.
If there's one saving grace for Kaepernick, it's the fact that none of those quarterbacks are as good as him.
If you're thinking that teams might be scared away from Kaepernick because he wants to be a starter, that doesn't seem to be the case for him anymore. Smith spoke with Kaepernick's girlfriend (Nessa Diab) last week, and she apparently told him that Kap would be willing to take a backup job.
"One of the things that Nessa Diab told me last week when she and I met, she said, 'Colin Kaeperinck trains five days a week, every day, all five days, at 5 a.m.,'" Smith said. "'Working out a minimum of three hours a day, if not longer. He's ready to go. He wants to be back in the NFL and it doesn't have to be as a starting quarterback. It could be as a backup quarterback.'"
That actually adds a twist to the situation, because if Kaepernick is willing to be a backup, that presumably means he'd be willing to play for backup money. If that's the case, there wouldn't be much risk to signing him, and if anything, the NFL should be encouraging teams to make it happen.
If Kaepernick signs with someone, that would solve a lot of problems for the league. For one, people would stop talking about the fact that he's been blackballed. Also, if he plays well, it would be a comeback story that the league could easily sell. On the other hand, if he doesn't play well, his new team could cut him and the league wouldn't have to answer anymore questions about why Kaepernick never got another chance to play. For the NFL, there's not a lot of downside.
If you're wondering what kind of football shape Kaepernick is, he did spend some time practicing with multiple NFL players this offseason, including Odell Beckham.