NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell made an appearance on FS1’s “First Things First” on Thursday morning ahead of the first game of the 2017 NFL season between the Patriots and Chiefs and, among other things, discussed the status of Colin Kaepernick.
After Goodell briefly discussed the new season and joked about the less-than-warm reception Goodell expects from the Foxborough crowd, Cris Carter asked about Colin Kaepernick’s sustained unemployment, and whether Goodell was troubled by it.
Goodell replied that he believed the league to be a meritocracy, and that he wants to see everyone get an opportunity, including Kaepernick. Nick Wright then followed up with Goodell, asking whether he thought Kaepernick had the talent to play in the NFL based on what he saw from him last season.
“I don’t make those decisions,” Goodell replied, “I’m not a football expert.”
Goodell went on to say that he’s more a “huge fan” that has a “role as commissioner” and that he “let the football people make those decisions,” and added that each team has specific needs that should be addressed with their particular interests in mind.
This is a fair assessment, and it’s true that each team has a different playbook and mindset and that Kaepernick might not be the best fit for every roster. But with the roster of questionable quarterback matchups scheduled for this weekend, and Joe Webb getting a backup job just days ago despite not having thrown an NFL pass since 2011, it’s tough to see the NFL as a meritocracy with Kaepernick still on the sidelines.
You can watch Goodell’s remarks on Kaepernick in the clip below.
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