By Ken Reed
Get this: The Buffalo Bills signed a quarterback this past weekend that hasn’t thrown a pass in the NFL for six years! That’s right, the Bills have signed Joe Webb to be a backup quarterback. He last threw a pass in an NFL regular season game in 2011.
With that signing, we can officially put to rest any lingering claims like this: “Colin Kaepernick isn’t getting blackballed by the NFL, he’s just not good enough as a player.”
Kaepernick, a Super Bowl quarterback still in his physical prime at age 29, remains unemployed, while guys like Webb and Brock Osweiler (a quarterback cut by the woeful Cleveland Browns and resigned by the Denver Broncos) continue to get opportunities.
Clearly, Kaepernick is getting ostracized due to his politics and not his playing ability. Just look at the stats:
First, Kaepernick’s career interception percentage (1.8 percent) is second in NFL history to Aaron Rodgers. Don’t NFL coaches like quarterbacks who take care of the ball?
Kaepernick’s career-adjusted net yards per pass, which includes bonus points for throwing touchdowns while penalizing a player for interceptions and sacks, is better than Mike Glennon, Blaine Gabbert, and Matt Barkley, all marginal quarterbacks signed during the offseason.
In a statistical analysis done in May, Kaepernick’s Total Quarterback Rating (Total QBR) was higher than 18 NFL backup quarterbacks.
In terms of just 2016 Total QBR, Kaepernick’s rating was higher than 2016 NFL starters Ryan Tannehill, Cam Newton, Carson Wentz, Eli Manning, Blake Bortles, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Case Keenum.
Kaepernick is out of the league for exercising his First Amendment rights and his public stance against police brutality during the national anthem. Never mind that he has a clean legal background. Or that he has given $800,000 to community charitable causes. (He has pledged $1 million in this effort.)
Meanwhile, NFL teams continue to sign players with ugly legal backgrounds. At least five teams picked players with histories of legal problems in the last NFL draft. That includes the Cincinnati Bengals drafting running back Joe Mixon, who punched a woman and broke bones in her face in 2014.
The NFL’s moral compass is clearly broken and needs to go into the repair shop.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #17 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports With Legendary New York Times Sports Columnist Robert Lipsyte – We chat about Lipsyte’s amazing career and some of the athletes he covered and got to know well, like Muhammad Ali, as well as his relationships with fellow sports journalists like Bob Costas and Howard Cosell.
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Episode #16 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Andrew Maraniss: Outstanding Author of Books That Focus On the Intersection of Sports, History and Social Justice.
Episode #15 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports Psychology with Dr. Tim Rice. We discuss the growth of sports psychology at all levels, the positive impact that a number of high profile athletes have had by opening up, and the importance of everyone involved in sports caring for the whole athlete, mind and body.
Episode #14 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Making Sense of the Injury Pandemic in Major League Baseball – Gary McCoy is a strength, conditioning and high performance coach who has worked with several Major League Baseball organizations.
Episode #13 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: A Conversation With Long-Time MLB Exec Dan Evans About What’s Right With Baseball and What Could Be Better – Evans is a former general manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers and is currently a consultant for Go the Distance Baseball, which owns the Field of Dreams movie site.
Episode #12 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: A Fun Chat With Dan Gutman, Author of the Baseball Card Adventure Series for Kids
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
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