A big name who might give the new XFL an instantly higher profile is unlikely to play in the league, according to Commissioner Oliver Luck.
Luck was interviewed recently by the Tampa Bay Times as he toured the facilities of the Tampa Bay Vipers, one of the league’s eight teams.
The XFL operates in a different model than the NFL, centrally hiring players for all of the teams. The league has held a draft, and teams are now practicing in preparation for play to begin in February.
Luck was asked about the league’s interest in former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who recently staged a workout in hopes of returning to the NFL.
The commissioner was dismissive about the quarterback who started the divisive national anthem protests that rocked the NFL — but not for political reasons.
“I think his salary demands are way out of our ballpark. He was never really a viable option,” Luck said.
The average XFL player is expected to make $55,000 this season, Fox News reported.
Kaepernick’s last NFL contract was for $114 million over six years.
Earlier this year, he demanded at least $20 million to play in another upstart spring league, the short-lived Alliance of American Football, according to The Associated Press.
Luck also was asked about former Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel and former Cleveland and Indianapolis Colts running back Trent Richardson.
“Johnny has his own history, and we have coaches from the CFL who have seen him close up,” Luck said.
As for Richardson, Luck said he was not good enough.
“Coaches and scouts looked at him and didn’t think he was going to help their team. I think the guys we have on our teams are the best 560 that aren’t playing in the National Football League,” he said.
“People don’t want social and political issues coming into play when they are trying to be entertained,” McMahon said. “We want someone who wants to take a knee to do their version of that on their personal time.”
He later told The Wrap that making it mandatory to stand for the anthem would make sense in the new league.
“It’s a time-honored tradition to stand and appreciate the national anthem with any sport. Here in America — for that matter, in any country … so I think it’d be appropriate to do that,” he said.
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