Sporting News is reporting that an XFL spokesman confirmed that the fledgling football league has had talks with former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
Those talks, which happened last fall, allegedly included a discussion about Kaepernick playing in the XFL and not working in some arbitrary capacity.
Sporting News’ Michael McCarthy reported that Kaepernick had the same absurd contractual demands for playing in the XFL that he did for playing in the AAF.
Namely, the former San Francisco 49er wanted to be paid $20 million to suit up in the new leagues.
That is patently absurd. Kaepernick was asking for as much money as some of the very best NFL quarterbacks. By virtually any statistical metric, Kaepernick is a backup quarterback on the NFL level. It just makes no sense.
But to his credit, Kaepernick has done a wonderful job of making martyrdom profitable.
Why would these blatantly bad-faith negotiations be any different?
Despite being called out by some of his peers for “selling out,” Kaepernick seems driven to line his pockets with cash, and his reported XFL negotiations seem no different from his standard modus operandi.
Kaepernick and his supporters can deny “selling out” all the way to their graves, but there is now mounting evidence that that was, in fact, the case.
The XFL negotiations are particularly damning.
WWE tycoon and XFL architect Vince McMahon made it very clear when the XFL reboot was first announced that all XFL players would be standing for the national anthem.
Vince McMahon on his new football league requiring players to stand during the National Anthem: “It’s a time honored tradition to stand.”
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) January 25, 2018
“It’s a time-honored tradition to stand,” McMahon said.
Further echoing those sentiments, XFL Commissioner Oliver Luck stressed McMahon’s commitment to standing for the anthem on former NFL player A.J. Hawk’s podcast in October 2018.
“Vince feels strongly about (anthem protests), so that will be one of those things that will differentiate us from the NFL. Remember, unlike the NFL, we will not have a union when we start. There won’t be collective bargaining. … We could say to a player, ‘Hey there is a clause in the contract that says I hereby agree to stand for the national anthem,'” Luck said on “The Hawk Cast.”
Considering that Kaepernick said he took a knee during the anthem to protest racial injustice and police brutality, why would he ever negotiate with a football league that has made its stance on anthem protests so crystal clear?
Does Kaepernick think that racial injustice and police brutality are no longer an issue? Or does he just want the money?
Or is he just afraid that if he steps back on a football field he’ll shatter the bizarre narrative that he was some sort of elite legend on the gridiron (and you know, not just a backup quarterback who couldn’t win once his defense stopped being elite)?
Either way, these negotiations with the AAF and XFL cast an unflattering light on Kaepernick’s supposed martyrdom.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.