Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr has given Colin Kaepernick a vote of confidence.
Kaepernick worked out for the Raiders two weeks ago, the first chance he’s had to try out for an NFL team since last playing in 2016, when he started kneeling during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial inequality. Although his future with the Raiders is unclear, Carr said that he would be a “great” addition to the Raiders’ locker room.
“For us, I think he would be great,” Carr said on Tuesday, after the Raiders’ first mandatory minicamp practice of the season. “Him and I would get along great.”
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Carr said he’s known Kaepernick since their collegiate days in the Western Athletic Conference, “which is no longer a thing,” Carr joked. Carr played for Fresno State in 2009, while Kaepernick played for Nevada.
“I remember our days back then, and just watching him and what he did in college and getting to know him and talking to him on the phone,” Carr said. “I’ve told you guys, I’ve loved my time with him. I think he’s a great guy. He’s been great to be around. I’ve enjoyed being around him, talking with him, competing against him.”
Carr didn’t get a chance to meet with Kaepernick when he worked out with the Raiders on May 25, but he said he shared his same glowing review with first-year coach Josh McDaniels.
“I don’t want to speak for everybody in that kind of sense – I don’t want someone mad at me for saying, ‘I think it would be great’ – but I know him and I would get along great,” Carr continued. “I know we have in the past, and I think we would again. I think for the most part, I think he’d get along great with our guys.”
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It’s been five and a half years since Kaepernick last appeared in an NFL game.
In six seasons with the 49ers, Kaepernick started 58 games. He threw for a total of 12,271 yards, 72 touchdowns with 30 interceptions for a career passer rating of 88.9. During the 2012 season, Kaepernick took over as starter for Alex Smith and helped the 49ers reach Super Bowl 47, where the team lost to the Baltimore Ravens.
In April, Raiders owner Mark Davis said that Kaepernick “deserves every chance in the world to become a quarterback in the National Football League.”
“If our coaches and general manager want to bring him in or want him to be the quarterback on this team, I would welcome him with open arms,” Davis added.
In October 2017, Kaepernick filed a collusion grievance against the league, alleging that owners were conspiring to keep him out of the league. Kaepernick settled that grievance 16 months later.
Contributing: Jim Reineking