NFL slams trial with Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid

FFriday was a payday for Colin Kaepernick, a former San Francisco 49ers quarterback, and Eric Reid, a Carolina Panthers half-defenseman.

The two men filed separate collusion grievances against the NFL, and the league chose to settle their disputes with them, according to ESPN.

The players alleged that Kaepernick had been one of the first to join him because Kaepernick had launched the Kneeling Epidemic in 2016 and that Reid, then 49, had been mistaken for unfairly targeted by its owners. league.

"In recent months, Kaepernick and Reid's lawyers have engaged in ongoing dialogue with NFL officials," said player advocate Mark Geragos and the NFL in a statement released on Friday. according to ESPN. "As a result of these discussions, the parties have decided to resolve the outstanding grievances.The settlement of this case is subject to a confidentiality agreement, so that no other party will comment."

The exact figures still do not know how much each player has received. Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report, however, said the Kaepernick settlement is between $ 60 million and $ 80 million.

In the end, all of this is ridiculous. No player deserves the money from an NFL lawsuit when it hurts league results.

There is no doubt that Kaepernick's knee controversy over the national anthem has hurt the NFL. In the 2016 and 2017 NFL seasons, television viewing in the league dropped by more than 17 percentage points. A UBS poll and a JD Power poll confirmed that the main reason for the decline in ratings was the controversy surrounding the anthem (although this is not the only cause). According to Clay Travis of Fox Sports, this drop in ratings has resulted in a revenue loss of about $ 500 million for NFL television partners.

This is also correlated with the decline in favorability of the NFL. In October 2013, the league's approval rate was 64%. in October 2017, however, it had dropped to 46 percent, according to a Fox News poll.

If the teams do not want to sign these two players, it's their business. After all, freedom of expression is not even a protected right for government employees at the workplace, let alone private sector employees, as decided by the government. Supreme Court case of 2006 Garcetti c. Ceballos.

In addition, the NFL Players 'contracts, based on an agreement collectively negotiated by the NFL Players' Association, contain wording that may justify not signing these players.

Partly in the contracts, he states: "He pledges to do everything in his power and to remain loyal to the club, and to behave on and off the pitch by appropriately acknowledging that the Professional football success largely depends on the respect and approval of the public. those associated with the game. "

Because kneeling for the national anthem harms the league's perception, it's easy to understand why teams might be reluctant to sign kneelers like Kaepernick.

In the case of Kaepernick, the only problem was to kneel. During the 2016 season, he wore socks depicting policemen in the form of pigs and a glorifying Fidel Castro t-shirt. In 2017, he worsened his public image by donating $ 25,000 to an organization honoring the killer of cops and the national terrorist Assata Shakur. The same year, he was photographed with the controversial organizer of Women's March, Linda Sarsour, a supporter of anti-Semitic Louis Farrakhan.

It should also be noted that Kaepernick appeared to have strict contractual requirements in relation to his ability to play. In 2016, he went 1-10 as a 49ers quarterback, posted a 49.3 QBR (23rd out of 30 NFL qualifiers) and struggled to retain the ball, scoring nine times in 11 starts.

Still, he wanted a contract in the range of $ 9 million to $ 10 million for the 2017 NFL season, according to CBS Sports. Most recently, he sought a $ 20 million contract to play in the Alliance of American Football (where players are signed for three-year contracts), while the average player earns just $ 75,000 per game. season.

That said, it is understandable that the teams want to stay away from Kaepernick. The case of Reid's collusion is even less logical because he is still in the league.

When Reid became a free agent following the 2017 NFL season, he struggled to find a job. However, he was signed by the Carolina Panthers in late September and played 13 games with them. Last Monday, he signed with the team a three-year extension worth about $ 22 million.

Kaepernick was fortunate to lead a six-year career in the NFL – until he injected politics into his career while his abilities were declining anyway. Meanwhile, Reid continues to receive millions of dollars to play football. They made choices and people had the choice of their reaction. In general, it was negative.

In a business where the agenda earns money, there is no reason for the teams to be forced to use controversial numbers simply to appear socially "awake". interested in them.

Tom Joyce (@TomJoyceSports) is an independent writer published with USA Today, the Boston Globe, Newsday, ESPN, the Detroit Free Press, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Federalist and several other media outlets.

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