Former 49er Colin Kaepernick saw his career prospects disappear after he started to quietly protest police brutality by kneeling during the national anthem. Now, he has filed a collusion claim against the NFL for unfairly blackballing him.
“We can confirm that this morning we filed a grievance under the CBA on behalf of Colin Kaepernick,” Kaepernick’s attorney Mark Geragos said in a statement, according to CBS. “This was done only after pursuing every possible avenue with all NFL teams and their executives.”
Geragos alleges that the NFL is unfairly denying his client a job due to “partisan political provocation by the Executive Branch of our government,” instead of his skill on the field. “Kaepernick’s goal has always been, and remains, to simply be treated fairly by the league he performed at the highest level for and to return to the football playing field,” says Geragos.
Kaepernick’s silent protest sparked a national movement and tweets from the president, making him both a respected role model and a scapegoat. NFL teams have since shied away from signing the quarterback. It’s unclear whether filing the official grievance will help Kaepernick’s job search or hurt it, but per his attorney, he is willing to make the claim to protect other athletes from such collusive action.