Last year, playing for a bad San Francisco 49ers team, Colin Kaepernick had a quarterback rating of 90.7, completed 59.2 percent of his passes, and threw for 16 touchdown with only four interceptions. These numbers, other than the touchdown passes to interceptions ratio, aren’t outstanding. However, they suggest that Kaepernick is one of the 32 best quarterbacks in football and certainly one of the best 64.
Yet, as of today, none of the NFL’s 32 teams has a spot for Kaepernick, either as a starter or a backup. This almost certainly is due to the fact that he expressed anti-police and other hard-left political views, and refused to respect the National Anthem when it was played before his games. (Kaepernick now says he will stand for the Anthem.)
I strongly disagree with Kaepernick’s views and I’m offended by his failure to stand for the National Anthem. But the quarterback’s offensive expression of unpopular views shouldn’t cost him employment opportunities. NFL teams have the right not to hire Kaepernick because of his ideology and the way he expresses it. However, something valuable is diminished when they exercise that right — the freedom powerfully to express unpopular political views.