Colin Kaepernick better than any backup NFL QB

It’s been four years since Colin Kaepernick last played in the NFL, but the former 49ers quarterback is still the best insurance policy any team could hope to invest in, one NFL analyst said Friday.

“I can clearly say right now, with extreme confidence, that Kaepernick is better than every single backup in the entire NFL,” said NFL Network analyst Nate Burleson. “That’s not me taking a shot at the backups. That’s just me appreciating the fact that Kaepernick once took his team to a Super Bowl (and) NFC Championship game.”

The question remains, though, whether a team will give Kaepernick another chance to play again.

Kaepernick hasn’t been able to find his way back into the league since he was at the forefront of the racial and social injustice movement when he symbolically took a knee during the national anthem. But, in the aftermath of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis, the NFL’s stance toward expressions of social justice has softened considerably.

Hall of Fame receiver Terrell Owens, another former 49er, said the NFL needs to do right by Kaepernick.

“The NFL owes this man an apology … He needs an opportunity to get his job back,” Owens said. “This guy was stripped of his life. You can’t tell me that he is not capable of playing in the National Football League right now.”

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, who said he now regrets not signing Kaepernick back in 2017 when Seattle interviewed him while it was looking for a backup, said a team reached out to him Thursday to ask about Kaepernick.

If given a chance, Kaepernick would certainly provide a team with quite a weapon off the bench. Chicago’s Nick Foles, who will battle incumbent Mitchell Trubisky, is currently the league’s only No. 2 quarterback who has played in a Super Bowl. He was Super Bowl LII MVP when he led the Eagles past the Patriots in 2018.

Other productive backups around the league include the Cowboys’ Andy Dalton and the Saints’ Jameis Winston. Both the 49ers (Nick Mullens) and Raiders (Marcus Mariota) are quite happy with their alternatives at quarterback.

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