Patriots’ Devin McCourty reveals what NFL needs to do next for Colin Kaepernick
The saga between quarterback Colin Kaepernick and the NFL is well known. Back in 2016, Kaepernick began kneeling during the national anthem as a way to protest police brutality and racial injustice in the United States and around the world.
However, this did not go over well with the NFL. Some fans were unhappy and many believe the NFL blackballed Kaepernick as a result of his protests. Since 2016, he has yet to play another game in the NFL. That is despite solid play that season and an overall strong NFL resume.
Still just 32 years old, there is no reason to believe Kaepernick could not still be successful in the NFL if given another chance.
The league itself has softened up on the quarterback, pivoting to agreeing with his stance. Quite a few of the people who had issue with the protest now understand and encourage it. And many seem to agree that he is owed an apology.
The NFL, according to comments from commissioner Roger Goodell, is actively trying to get Kaepernick back in the league. But this has all been just talk; the action is what matters most.
According to Ryan Hannable of WEEI.com, New England Patriots star defensive back Devin McCourty believes he knows the answer to that. He revealed what he believes the NFL should do next for Kaepernick:
“I think, first and foremost, they need to have a sit-down … They need to bring him in there. They need to tell him, face-to-face, everything that they’ve said vocally, that they’ve said publicly. Tell that to him directly. Then, I think just moving forward giving him a real opportunity to be in this league. You know, last year I was one of the guys when he had that workout, I thought it was bogus. I didn’t think it was a real opportunity for him. But I think he needs to be heard now even more than back in 2016. You know, we all kind of cut him off and didn’t really embrace him the way we should have …
“I think it’s time now to bring him into the fold. If the NFL really wants to be involved in this, they need to make sure they elevate his platform and let him speak and let him do the work he’s been doing.”
So it all starts with a sit-down with Goodell and league officials. McCourty wants the NFL to echo what they’ve been saying publicly, but say it to him, and to Kaepernick the apology he deserves.
That should be followed up with Kaepernick being given a legitimate opportunity to come back to the NFL. They allowed Kaepernick to work out last year, but a lot of people, including McCourty, saw it as a publicity stunt, especially with all the stipulations that NFL demanded of him. Finally, McCourty wants the league to give Kaepernick a platform to speak.
Whether the NFL chooses to follow through with any of this, however, remains to be seen.