Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid filed a grievance, charging collusion, against NFL owners in the fall of 2017.
In February 2019, Kaepernick’s attorney announced the collusion case with the NFL had been settled.
At the time, it seemed like a big win for players who stood by Kaepernick’s side. Even stars in other sports, such as LeBron James, commented on the settlement.
“I’m happy to see the news come out yesterday that he won his suit,” LeBron said. “I hope it’s a hell of a lot of money that can set not only him up but set his family up, set his grandkids up for the rest of their lives. I hope the word of what he did will live on throughout American history.”
Fast forward a month.
The Wall Street Journal reported Kaepernick and former teammate Eric Reid settled their collusion case for less than $10 million. It is unclear how the money will be split up between the two.
Many, like LeBron, speculated Kaepernick’s settlement money would make up for the money he lost by not still playing in the league.
A few days before the settlement was announced, Reid agreed to a three-year contract extension with the Carolina Panthers. Kaepernick remains unemployed.
Kaepernick filed a grievance on Oct. 16, 2017 alleging the league and teams were in violation of the anti-collusion clause of the collective bargaining agreement.
Kaepernick last played in an NFL game on Jan. 1, 2017 in the final regular-season game of the 2016 NFL season. The 2016 season is also when he started kneeling to protest social injustice against the African-American community.
The reactions to Kaepernick’s kneeling were mixed: Some supported him; others said his kneeling was disrespecting America and the flag.
President Donald Trump was openly against kneeling during the national anthem, speaking out openly on the matter and tweeting multiple times on the topic.
“If a player wants the privilege of making millions of dollars in the NFL, or other leagues, he or she should not be allowed to disrespect our Great American Flag (or Country) and should stand for the National Anthem,” Trump wrote. “If not, YOU’RE FIRED. Find something else to do!”
Despite a 28-30 record as a starting quarterback, a 4-2 record in the postseason and a Super Bowl XLVII appearance, Kaepernick remained unsigned even after several starting quarterbacks were injured during the past two seasons.
Anthony De Bono is a junior journalism major at Arizona State University.