Wed, Dec 11, 2019

In another twist in the Colin Kaepernick private workout story, both the rules and location have changed in the eleventh hour. According to Kaepernick’s representatives, the workout will be moved to an alternate location in Atlanta this afternoon that will now be open to the media and all NFL representatives. That location is the Charles Drew High School in Riverdale, per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The NFL had previously declined to allow any media or cameras into the workout, but Kaepernick wanted transparency. 

The 3 p.m. workout is now off, and the new workout is scheduled for 4 p.m. ET. An official statement was released from representatives Ben Meiselas and Jeff Nalley on behalf of Kaepernick:

“Because of recent decisions made by the NFL, the workout for Colin Kaepernick will be changing to an alternate location in Atlanta which will now start at 4 p.m. All representatives from clubs are invited to attend and will be provided the location. Further, all media will be invited to attend and upon request will be provided with the location. From the outset, Mr. Kaepernick requested a legitimate process and from the outset the NFL league office has not provided one. Most recently, the NFL has demanded that as a precondition to the workout, Mr. Kaepernick sign an unusual liability waiver that addresses employment-related issues and rejected the standard liability waiver from physical injury proposed by Mr. Kaepernick’s representatives. Additionally, Mr. Kaepernick requested all media be allowed into the workout to observe and film it and for an independent film crew to be there to ensure transparency. The NFL denied this request. Based on the prior conduct by the NFL league office, Mr. Kaepernick simply asks for a transparent and open process which is why a new location has been selected for today. Mr. Kaepernick looks forward to seeing the representatives from the clubs today.”

The NFL issued a response right as Kaepernick’s rescheduled workout was about to begin, saying that they had already fulfilled a number of Kaepernick’s requests and were disappointed that he did not show up.  

Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports reports that Kaepernick’s camp had issues with the NFL’s initial plan, including: problems with the type of waiver NFL requested, while Kaepernick had agreed to a regular pro day injury waiver; the NFL’s alleged refusal to allow Kaepernick’s camp to tape the workout; and the NFL’s alleged refusal to allow the media to record the session. This move boils down to Kaepernick wanting the public to see the workout and everything that happens with their own eyes. When the NFL refused to allow that, plans were made to change to an open venue. 

According to CBS NFL Insider Jason La Canfora, Kaepernick’s agent said that former Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson, who was originally slated to lead the drills today, was still welcome to oversee the workout. Jackson declined, however, and elected to go back to the airport, according to Michael Silver. 

More than 24 NFL teams were expected to attend the workout on Saturday. On Tuesday, news broke that the league had sent a memo to all NFL teams announcing that a workout had been scheduled for Kaepernick. 

“Earlier this year, we discussed some possible steps with his representatives and they recently emphasized his level of preparation and that he is ready to work out for clubs and be interviewed by them,” the memo read. “We have therefore arranged this opportunity for him to work out, and for all clubs to have the opportunity to evaluate his current readiness and level of interest in resuming his NFL career.”

The NFL didn’t inform Kaepernick’s representatives of Saturday’s workout until Tuesday morning. They then asked for the workout to take place on a Tuesday, but the NFL said it had to be this Saturday. Kaepernick’s representatives then asked if it could be a later Saturday. The NFL said no.

We’ll have more to come on Kaepernick’s new workout as the story develops.

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