Colin Kaepernick's Top Highlights, Reaction from Impressive NFL Workout

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistNovember 16, 2019

Free agent Colin Kaepernick participates in a workout for NFL football scouts and media Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019 in Riverdale, Ga. (AP Photo/Todd Kirkland)
Todd Kirkland/Associated Press

For the first time in over two years, Colin Kaepernick stepped on a football field in front of NFL teams to show off his talents.

The showcase didn't go off without incident, as Kaepernick's representatives issued a statement on his behalf announcing the event would start an hour later (4 p.m. ET) than initially planned, at a different location than the NFL arranged and media would be invited to attend in the interest of transparency:

NESSA @nessnitty

#Transparency We are ready!!! For teams/media wanting to attend today please contact his agent now ❤️ https://t.co/t06x22PoK9

The NFL issued its own statement in response to Kaepernick's decision to have the location changed:

Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter

NFL’s response to Colin Kaepernick opting to do his own workout today in Atlanta: https://t.co/uvUZGH7CQ5

In addition to those changes, NFL Network's Michael Silver noted Hue Jackson, whom the NFL had tabbed to run the workout, opted not to attend when the venue was moved over an hour away. Kaepernick's representatives reportedly invited him within an hour before it was scheduled to begin.

Per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, 25 teams were confirmed to attend the workout at its original location. It's unclear how many clubs had their representatives go to the new spot, but the event began with some familiar faces there to support Kaepernick on the field:

Kaylee Hartung @KayleeHartung

On the field with @Kaepernick7 Bruce Ellington Eric Reid Brice Butler Jordan Veasy Ari Werts

The venue was a high school in Riverdale, Georgia, approximately 60 miles away from the Falcons' training facility, where it was originally supposed to take place.

Jourdan Rodrigue @JourdanRodrigue

No non-media currently getting access to the stands, but as word of location got out fans began lining up against the fence outside the far end of the field to see the workout. https://t.co/fHzwX3H5Ov

The Athletic's Jourdan Rodrigue did note there was "at least a handful of NFL personnel" in attendance once Kaepernick began throwing:

Jourdan Rodrigue @JourdanRodrigue

Colin Kaepernick works out at a high school in Riverdale, GA in front of media and at least a handful of NFL personnel : https://t.co/XpNK9aMSG9

Kaepernick showed no signs of rust throwing the football:

patrick @PatDStat

Colin Kaepernick to Bruce Ellington. #NFL https://t.co/EOYD9CsWAn

JRSportBrief @JRSportBrief

Kaepernick getting a pass out to free agent Brice Butler. https://t.co/fhMI8CA0Kk

JRSportBrief @JRSportBrief

Kaepernick tryna show off his arm on a deep pass. https://t.co/ieFbJ7HBgt

1st Team All Common Sense @MrRoscoes

Kaepernick ✊🏾 https://t.co/FRnYSn2oe1

ESPN's Adam Schefter provided more glowing praise from an NFL executive:

Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter

After today’s workout in Atlanta, an NFL executive at Colin Kaepernick’s throwing session said his arm talent is “elite” and is the same as when he came out of college. He said that Kaepernick threw the ball well.

Once the workout wrapped up, the reviews for Kaepernick's ability and performance were high with some reservations mixed in:

Doug Farrar @NFL_DougFarrar

So far, Kaepernick looks like Kaepernick. Outstanding velocity, everything on a rope, can make any throw. Questions teams will have about different arcs and speeds, performance when hurried, and progression-reading -- the questions I'd have -- can't really be answered here.

Cameron Wolfe @CameronWolfe

Colin Kaepernick's deep ball is still there. He was inconsistent with it early with some overthrows and under underthrows. He got better with as session went on. There were some timing issues with WRs, not uncommon with a new group. No defense in workout. But top-64 NFL QB? Yes.

mike freeman @mikefreemanNFL

Bottom line with Kaepernick’s workout is this: it demonstrated why there isn’t, never was, and never will be a FOOTBALL reason for him to be out of the NFL. Not one.

Daniel Jeremiah @MoveTheSticks

Watched last 10-12 mins of Kaepernick workout on live YouTube feed while on a bus in Mexico City. Unique experience. He looked similar to what he’s been. Plenty of velocity, inconsist touch/feel. Looked a little gassed. Tough to gauge more than that from video I was watching.

Kaepernick made his way around the track after finishing his throwing session, thanked the scouts from the Washington Redskins, New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs who were there to watch him and asked them to send a message their respective teams' owners:

Jourdan Rodrigue @JourdanRodrigue

Kaepernick thanks scouts from Washington, New York Jets and Kansas City and says: “When you go back, tell your owners to stop being scared.” https://t.co/UMLSrIcn09

The story of this workout will likely end up being more about the continued back-and-forth between Kaepernick and the NFL regarding the late change in venue, what happened and why it happened.

When Kaepernick stepped between the lines, he looked like the player he was three years ago when he last played in an NFL game for the 49ers.