It’s been more than a year since Colin Kaepernick first gained attention for his silent protest of the national anthem.
It’s been a little over six months since the former 49ers quarterback opted out of his contract and became a free agent.
Yet, on Tuesday, two star NFL players – one current and one retired – were speaking about Kaepernick, who remains unsigned.
Former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis – now an analyst on Showtime’s “Inside the NFL” – reportedly said on the show that his old team was considering bringing Kaepernick in, but a tweet by his girlfriend, radio and TV personality Nessa Diab, played a major factor in why the team decided not to sign him.
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“When me and (Ravens owner) Steve Bisciotti were talking ... we were talking about giving this kid an opportunity to get back in the National Football League,” Lewis told reporter Judy Battista on the show, according to multiple reports.
Lewis went on about his support of Kaepernick.
“I have been fighting for this kid behind the table like nobody has ... I’ve never been against Colin Kaepernick. But I am against the way he’s done it.
“Then, his girl goes out and put out this racist gesture and doesn’t know we are in the back office about to try to get this guy signed. Steve Bisciotti has said it himself, ‘How can you crucify Ray Lewis when Ray Lewis is the one calling for Colin Kaepernick?’ ”
A current NFL quarterback believes Kaepernick should be on a roster.
Carolina Panthers star Cam Newton told The Associated Press he “absolutely” should be employed by an NFL team.
“Do I think Kaepernick is better than some of these starting quarterbacks in this league? Absolutely,” Newton said. “Should he be on a roster …? Absolutely. Is he good enough to be a starting quarterback? Absolutely.”
Newton and the Panthers visit the 49ers in the season opener Sunday.