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Colin Kaepernick Training: What Teams Will Be In Atlanta On Saturday?

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At least 11 teams have committed to attend Colin Kaepernick’s workout in Atlanta, Georgia, on Saturday.

Representatives from the Arizona Cardinals, Atlanta Falcons, Cleveland Browns, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, New York Giants, New York Jets, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Washington Redskins will attend the workout, the league said on Thursday.

According to ESPN, the Dallas Cowboys and the Seattle Seahawks are also expected to attend. Significantly, however, the two teams the bookmakers considered the favorite to sign Kaepernick—the Cincinnati Bengals and the Pittsburgh Steelers—are yet to confirm they will have a representative in Atlanta.

The NFL also confirmed former NFL head coach Hue Jackson will lead the drills, and former NFL head coach Joe Philbin will also be in attendance.

The workout will include on-field drills and an interview and is the first such event Kaepernick has attended since leaving the league at the end of the 2016 season.

The former Nevada alumni had risen to prominence earlier in 2016, when he began kneeling during the national anthem to protest against social and racial injustice.

At the end of the 2016 campaign Kaepernick opted to leave the 49ers to become a free agent, but received no offers from other teams and wasn’t even invited to work out for a franchise.

He subsequently sued the 32 franchise owners for colluding with each other to prevent him from returning to the league, before reaching a settlement with the NFL in February.

Colin Kaepernick, then #7 of the San Francisco 49ers, drops back to pass against the Seattle Seahawks at Levi’s Stadium on January 1, 2017 in Santa Clara, California.
Ezra Shaw/Getty

Saturday’s workout could be his best—perhaps final—shot at getting back into the league, but the event has already split opinions.

Some, such as ESPN host Stephen A. Smith, believe Kaepernick could have a job next week unless he performs dismally on Saturday or expresses political views which could scare or anger potential owners.

Others, such as Eric Reid, a close friend of Kaepernick and one of the first players to join the protests when he played for the 49ers, suggested the workout was simply a PR exercise engineered by the NFL to restore its reputation.

“At this point, it feels like a PR stunt. […] It’s disingenuous,” Reid said during the Carolina Panthers media availability on Wednesday. “They want the appearance of giving Colin a chance, but they give him two hours’ notice and say it has to be on a Saturday when they know decision-makers are traveling. So is this real? We’ll see.”

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