Word came Tuesday that the NFL has granted Colin Kaepernick a private workout this Saturday, including fieldwork and interviews. All 32 NFL franchises were invited to attend the workout, an opportunity to showcase his preparedness and prove whether or not he’s worthy of an NFL contract. Per Kaepernick’s agents, he’s been working out five days per week for the last three years to stay in playing shape.
Since opting out of his contract with the San Francisco 49ers at the end of 2016, Kaepernick’s agent reports that he has had just one visit with an NFL team, the Seattle Seahawks. He was also rumored to be in consideration for signing as Joe Flacco’s backup by the Ravens in 2017. The signing never came to fruition, however, after a controversial Tweet by Kaepernick’s girlfriend supposedly sent Ravens management running for the hills.
Kaepernick filed a grievance against the NFL in 2017 under the CBA, accusing them of colluding 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." The case was settled early in 2019 under undisclosed terms. It’s still unclear whether this workout hosted by the NFL is a part of that settlement.
Kaepernick hasn't seen the field since Week 17 of 2016, where he finished the year 1-10 in games started. Still, in an NFL season where we’ve seen Luke Falk, Matt Schaub and Chase Daniel under center, the point is well-taken that Kaepernick would, at the least, make an interesting backup in the league. His 639 rushing yards in 2014 ranks as the 16th most for any quarterback in a single NFL season.
Other Quarterback and Running Back Slants
Broncos second-round rookie QB Drew Lock resumed practicing Tuesday, as he's been recovering from a surgically repaired thumb injury. It sounds as though the team hasn’t felt that he was ready for a start through the offseason and the volume of offensive snaps he’s missed working with the second team doesn’t help. Still, at some point, it’s worth seeing what you have in your rookie as the Broncos season is all but washed at 3-6. … Coming off the Monday night game, Matt Breida could reportedly miss some time with a reaggravation of his sprained ankle. Breida is rarely fully healthy and is as tough as they come, but it wouldn't be surprising to see him miss a week to allow that ankle to fully heal. Should he be unavailable, his 12.1 touches per game would likely be split three ways among the NFL's most productive rushing offenses in Tevin Coleman, Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson. ... Steelers RB James Conner practiced in full Tuesday after missing Weeks 9 and 10 with a shoulder injury. He should be good to go to suit up for Thursday Night Football, as the Steelers face the Browns on the road. In both games that Conner has faced the Browns as a starter, he's eclipsed 192 scrimmage yards and two touchdowns. ... The Texans appear to be searching for some depth at the running back position, hosting free agents Jeremy Hill and Elijah McGuire for workouts. Neither left with deals.
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Wide Receiver and Tight End Slants
After experiencing significant swelling after a leg contusion suffered on Monday Night Football, head coach Pete Carroll says he does not think Tyler Lockett should miss any game time. They get a perfectly-timed Week 11 bye, and regardless of whether or not he does miss any games, the positivity Carroll is good news for the longevity of Lockett's season. ... 49ers WR Emmanuel Sanders is considered day-to-day with a "rib cartilage issue" and is looking like a game-time decision heading into Week 11. Sanders has commanded an average of six targets per game and has managed two scores and a contest of 100+ yards in his short time in San Francisco. If good to go Sunday, he'll face off against the Cardinals, against whom his career average is 90 yards and 0.8 touchdowns per game. ... Speaking of 49ers wide receivers, coach Kyle Shanahan expressed his disappointment in WR Dante Pettis Tuesday, stating that "the more he doesn't take advantage of his opportunities, the less opportunities he gets." Pettis has had three games without a catch so far in 2019 and is completely unstartable in any format, making him a notable bust with his 6th-7th round ADP in fantasy football drafts. Rookie Deebo Samuel has run circles around Pettis this season and would appear to be the guy to own in dynasty formats. ... Colts rookie WR Parris Campbell hopes to be back in December after suffering a broken hand Week 9 versus the Steelers. He wasn't placed on the injured reserve list, which means that we should see him return to the field as soon as he's deemed ready by the medical staff. He does get two juicy matchups versus Tampa Bay and New Orleans in the fantasy football playoffs but hasn't shown enough to be anything other than a DFS glory play. Anyway, after a sit down with coach Frank Reich, TE Eric Ebron saw a season-high 12 targets, reeling in five of them for 56 yards. We can expect him to be a big beneficiary of a depleted Colts wide receiver corps. ... Seahawks TE Ed Dickson will look to make his 2019 debut after the bye - perfect timing for this prolific offense losing tight ends left and right. First, it was Will Dissly with the ruptured Achilles, and now, Luke Willson with a hamstring injury. Regardless, Dickson will play second fiddle to emerging asset Jacob Hollister, who has managed 99 yards and three touchdowns in his last two games.