Trump Says He ‘Absolutely’ Would Support Colin Kaepernick Getting a Second Chance in the NFL
Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick may get a second chance at a professional football career, and even President Donald Trump thinks he deserves a shot.
On Wednesday, Trump was interviewed by Sinclair correspondent Scott Thuman, who asked him about Kaepernick and whether he deserved another chance to play for an NFL team.
— Scott Thuman (@ScottThuman) June 17, 2020
“If he deserves it, he should,” replied Trump. “If he has the playing ability. He started off great, and then he didn’t end up very great…He was terrific in his rookie year, I think he was very good in his second year and then something happened, so his playing wasn’t up to snuff.”
“The answer is, absolutely I would,” the president continued. “As far as kneeling I would love to see him get another shot but obviously he has to be able to play well. If he can’t play well, I think it would be very unfair.”
Trump was singing a very different tune in 2017, telling an audience at a rally in Alabama that the NFL owners should “get that son of a bitch off the field” for showing “disrespect” to the American flag.
“Wouldn’t you love to see,” Trump asked the crowd, “one of these NFL owners when somebody disrespects our flag to say ‘get that son of a bitch off the field right now’ Out. Out. He’s fired.”
2016 was the last year Kaepernick played professionally, after six years with the 49ers. In 2017, he became a free agent but went unsigned. The recent George Floyd protests have brought new attention — and supporters — to his kneeling protests.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell recently apologized in a video statement for the NFL’s prior stance against the kneeling protests. “We, the National Football League, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest,” said Goodell, who has also publicly said he encouraged teams to consider signing Kaepernick.
Los Angeles Chargers coach Anthony Lynn told ESPN on Wednesday that teams “would be crazy” not to add Kaepernick to their workout lists as they gather their teams to prepare for the coming season.
“I haven’t spoken with Colin, not sure where he’s at as far as in his career, what he wants to do,” said Lynn. “But Colin definitely fits the style of quarterback for the system that we’re going to be running. I’m very confident and happy with the three quarterbacks that I have, but you can never have too many people waiting on the runway.”
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