For the 24th time in the history of this offseason, a quarterback not named Colin Kaepernick was signed by an NFL team. When this has happened in the past, supporters of Kaepernick have freaked the bleep out, wondering why Kap remains unemployed. Blaine Gabbert to the Cardinals? . Austin Davis to the Seahawks? .
It happened again on Thursday, with the Rams going out and signing a quarterback. Not just any quarterback either. The Rams signed Dan Orlovsky, who is most famous for running out of the back of the end zone during the Lions' winless season in 2008.
Naturally, people who think Kaepernick is being blackballed and/or think Kaepernick deserves a job took this in stride.
Kaepernick threw for more TDs last season than Dan Orlovsky has in his entire career. But haircuts or whatever.— dylan (@dyllyp) July 21, 2017
Kaepernick who made a Super Bowl isn't getting a job because he sucks at football but Dan Orlovsky who led a team to a 0-16 record can? pic.twitter.com/uisT7jVY7j— Stephen B. Smith (@BlackPope101) July 20, 2017
It is July 20, 2017 and Dan Orlovsky just got an NFL QB contract while Colin Kaepernick remains unemployed. WTH? pic.twitter.com/P3rMsZkZKz— Nate Sheridan (@nsheridan20) July 20, 2017
So Dan Orlovsky can get a job, but Colin Kaepernick can't. pic.twitter.com/5fIGV9PbBv— #Birdsnest (@Ckbirds) July 20, 2017
DAN ORLOVSKY. LET THAT SINK IN. DAN ORLOVSKY BEFORE KAEPERNICK.— Rahsaan Rogers (@RahsaanSalaam) July 20, 2017
tfw Dan Orlovsky gets signed before Colin Kaepernick pic.twitter.com/XsKBvFc8sU— Ted Glover (@purplebuckeye) July 20, 2017
dan orlovsky gets a NFL contract while Colin kaepernick is like pic.twitter.com/oZMlBRo0dh— brandon humble (@playb0y52) July 20, 2017
On no football field is Dan Orlovsky better than Kaepernick. Orlovsky is on a team. The Rams.— Bob Fescoe (@bobfescoe) July 20, 2017
Name a fan base that'd rather have Dan Orlovsky under centre than Colin Kaepernick. Aaaand go. https://t.co/HgKL2KwoM5— Tyson Hinschberger (@hinschcity) July 20, 2017
These people are all participating in some interesting social media chatter. But they're also all wrong.
You see, Dan Orlovsky is signing in the same role that Kaepernick would likely serve for a team. He will compete with Sean Mannion for the backup job behind Jared Goff and he could theoretically win it, but he is staring down an uphill battle to make the team.
It is almost certain he is making the veteran's minimum, and there is almost certainly very little guaranteed money on his deal.
The Rams are not going to play Orlovsky unless a) he makes the team, and b) Goff gets hurt. Yes, you can argue that Kaepernick would be more valuable in situation where Goff goes down. But teams have a salary cap. They have to manage the cap responsibly, and that means limiting the amount of money spent on the backup quarterback position. If you splurge on a backup quarterback, then you're facing a situation where you have less money to spend elsewhere.
But, if you're going to be mad, let's get mad. Here's a full list of all the quarterbacks signed before Colin Kaepernick this offseason.
- Mike Glennon, Bears -- I would rather sign him/pay him for the upside as a pocket passer. (Thus concludes the "better than Kaepernick" portion of the program.)
- Brian Hoyer, 49ers -- He's had success with Kyle Shanahan before? Kap couldn't go back to San Francisco anyway.
- Josh McCown, Jets -- He has started a lot of football games in recent years.
- Geno Smith, Giants -- He's a backup.
- Nick Foles, Chiefs -- He's a backup.
- Matt Barkley, 49ers -- He's a backup (to Hoyer).
- Blaine Gabbert, Cardinals -- He's a backup.
- Case Keenum, Vikings -- He's a backup.
- Chase Daniel, Saints -- He's a backup.
- Ryan Fitzpatrick, Buccaneers -- He's a backup.
- Ryan Mallett, Ravens -- He's a backup.
- Landry Jones, Steelers -- He's a backup.
- Mark Sanchez, Bears -- He's a backup.
- Josh Johnson, Giants -- He's a backup.
- Matt Schaub, Falcons -- He's a backup.
- Matt McGloin, Eagles -- He's a backup.
- T.J. Yates, Bills -- He's a backup.
- EJ Manuel, Raiders -- He's a backup.
- Kellen Moore, Cowboys -- He's a backup.
- Ryan Nassib, Saints -- He's a backup.
- Kellen Clemens, Chargers -- He's a backup.
- Matt Cassel, Titans -- He's a backup.
- Dan Orlovsky, Rams -- He's a backup.
- David Fales, Dolphins -- He's a backup.
So you probably notice something about these guys, right? After the first couple, they're all backups. They're all not making much money, with little of it guaranteed. Many of them will be released and change teams.
Kap is definitely better than most of them, but he is also likely looking to be a starter who gets more money. Or someone with a starting chance. On the other hand, yeah, it's a little odd that some of these guys have found work before Kaepernick. Just remember that not every situation is the same when it comes to these teams, and that signing Dan Orlovsky for no guaranteed money does not mean that a team actively passed over the opportunity to sign Colin Kaepernick.