Kaepernick's legal team will reportedly seek to subpoena Trump in NFL collusion case

Last offseason, as teams were signing free-agent quarterbacks, Giants owner John Mara offered some insights into why Colin Kaepernick remained out of work. 

"All my years being in the league, I never received more emotional mail from people than I did about that issue," Mara told TheMMQB.com's Jenny Vrentas in May 2017. "If any of your players ever do that, we are never coming to another Giants game. It wasn't one or two letters. It was a lot. It's an emotional, emotional issue for a lot of people, moreso than any other issue I've run into."

Midway through the 2017 season Kaepernick had filed a collusion grievance against the NFL, and last month, Pro Football Talk reported that "internal franchise documents generated as part of the free-agency evaluation process and testimony from witnesses harvested via depositions in the collusion litigation has established that teams viewed Kaepernick as being good enough not simply to be employed by an NFL team, but to be a starting quarterback for an NFL team."

Several owners and general managers have reportedly been deposed as part of the grievance. And according to Yahoo.com's Charles Robinson, Kaepernick's legal team is expected to seek to subpoena President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and "and other officials familiar with the president's agenda on protesting NFL players." 

The aim will be a dive into the administration's political involvement with the NFL during Kaepernick's free agency and the league's handling of player protests, sources said. This after recent disclosures that multiple owners had direct talks with Trump about players kneeling during the national anthem. The content of those conversations between Trump and owners -- as well as any forms of pressure directed at the league by the administration -- are expected to shape the requests to force the testimony of Trump, Pence and other affiliated officials, sources said.

First, the NFL's system arbitrator has to decide that such depositions are justified. Then, a federal court has to issue -- and enforce -- the subpoena requests. Then there's the matter of whether a sitting president can be compelled to sit for a deposition. 

Kaepernick hasn't played in the NFL since Jan. 1, 2017. The Seahawks expressed some interest in him in April, but nothing has come of it. Meanwhile, Kaepernick's former teammate, safety Eric Reid, who also remains unsigned after participating in the protests, filed his own collusion grievance earlier in May. 

CBS Sports Writer

Ryan Wilson has been an NFL writer for CBS Sports since June 2011, and he's covered five Super Bowls in that time. Ryan previously worked at AOL's FanHouse from start to finish, and Football Outsiders... Full Bio

Our Latest Stories