Colin Kaepernick Rated Ahead of 6 Possible Starters in ESPN Survey of NFL Execs

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistAugust 23, 2017

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick passes against the Los Angeles Rams during the first half of an NFL football game Saturday, Dec. 24, 2016, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

In a survey of 50 NFL talent evaluators conducted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando, free agent Colin Kaepernick was ranked ahead of six potential starting quarterbacks.

Sando wrote Wednesday that Kaepernick ranked 29th out of the 36 quarterbacks who were part of the survey, which placed signal-callers in one of five tiers. He placed 28th in the same survey last season.

Among the 50 people Sando surveyed were general managers, head coaches, assistant coaches and scouts.

Kaepernick came in ahead of Blake Bortles (Jacksonville Jaguars), Paxton Lynch (Denver Broncos), Brian Hoyer (San Francisco 49ers), Jared Goff (Los Angeles Rams), Tom Savage (Houston Texans), Josh McCown (New York Jets) and a pair of Cleveland Browns in Brock Osweiler and Cody Kessler.

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prevailing thought: Kaepernick's unsigned status has more to do with his decision to protest during the national anthem last season than his skill set. One anonymous executive echoed that sentiment in a discussion with Sando:

"It is really not about his ability. It's about the risk of what happens to the team concept when you sign a guy —a quarterback—who has put his personal agenda ahead of what we are all charged to do, which is put the team first. As a team builder, I cannot risk that happening again, especially for a borderline starter who needs the entire offense catered to his style."

Kaepernick went just 1-10 as the Niners' starter last season, but his statistical production was solid: 2,241 passing yards, 16 touchdowns, four interceptions, 468 rushing yards with two scores. He also has two NFC Championship Game appearances and one Super Bowl appearance on his resume as a starter.

Director Spike Lee is holding a rally for Kaepernick outside NFL headquarters in New York on Wednesday.

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