Kap works out at new site without NFL’s blessing
Colin Kaepernick’s scheduled workout on Saturday was relocated to an Atlanta-area high school, beginning two hours later than previously planned and without the blessing of the NFL.
The NFL and Kaepernick’s representatives were at odds over the quarterback’s liability waiver and the overall transparency of the workout.
The league had previously declined to allow media and cameras into the workout, as Kaepernick had requested, attorney Ben Meiselas and agent Jeff Nalley said in a statement. They said media would now be allowed to attend the workout.
“From the outset, Mr. Kaepernick requested a legitimate process and from the outset the NFL league office has not provided one,” Meiselas and Nalley said. “Most recently, the NFL has demanded that as a precondition to the workout, Mr. Kaepernick sign an unusual liability waiver that addresses employment-related issues and rejected the standard liability waiver from physical injury proposed by Mr. Kaepernick’s representatives.
“… Mr. Kaepernick simply asks for a transparent and open process which is why a new location has been selected for today.”
In a statement released Saturday afternoon, the NFL presented its own case in regard to the liability waiver.
“On Wednesday, we sent Colin’s representatives a standard liability waiver based on the waiver used by National Invitational Camp at all NFL Combines and by NFL clubs when trying out free agent players,” the NFL said. “At noon today, Colin’s representatives sent a completely rewritten and insufficient waiver.”
The workout is now being held at an Atlanta-area high school and is no longer officially affiliated with the NFL. The originally planned NFL workout had been scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. ET at the Atlanta Falcons‘ practice facility.
The NFL said it was not informed of Kaepernick’s change in plans until 2:30 p.m. ET and described the situation by saying Kaepernick “did not appear for his workout.”
According to the league, 25 teams were present for its sanctioned workout, and the league had planned to send video of the workout and an interview with Kaepernick to all 32 teams. It is not clear how many teams were in attendance for Kaepernick’s own workout.
Former NFL coach Hue Jackson had been set to lead the drills, with former NFL coach Joe Philbin in attendance to assist, the league said Thursday. On Saturday, the league said Jackson talked with Kaepernick’s agent about what drills would be run at the workout.
In its statement, the NFL said it had “made considerable effort to work cooperatively with Colin’s representatives,” detailing that it allowed his agents to suggest interview questions, for Nike and Kaepernick to shoot an ad that mentioned all the teams present at the workout, and for Kaepernick to bring his own receivers.
Sources had told ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler that the NFL was providing three wide receivers for the workout. But the league had not given out the names of those receivers. Bruce Ellington, who played with Kaepernick on the San Francisco 49ers in 2014 and 2015, was among the receivers Kaepernick worked out with Saturday.
A source told ESPN’s Howard Bryant that Kaepernick’s team did bring in five wide receivers to be part of the workout, which will include about 60 passes.
Kaepernick warmed up while wearing a shirt that read “Kunta Kinte,” but removed it once the workout began. Kunta Kinte is the name of a slave character from the novel and television miniseries “Roots: The Saga of an American Family.”
Kaepernick, 32, has been out of football since 2016, the year he began protesting police brutality and racial injustice by kneeling during the pregame national anthem.