For Hawks passing on Kaepernick makes no sense

Instead of bringing in a QB Pete Carroll says is a starter in the NFL, Seattle decided to sign Austin Davis instead. (6-5-2017)

On Monday the Seahawks finally made a move on a backup for Russell Wilson. The notable free agent you've heard a lot of chatter about - who impressed Pete Carroll in their recent meeting - got passed over for a guy who last got on the field with the Browns and didn't see any action last season.

The Hawks signed Austin Davis. Davis spent time with the Rams back in 2014, playing 10 games and throwing 12 touchdowns and nine interceptions. He then went to Cleveland in 2015, struggled in three games and joined the long list of guys who couldn't hold down the Browns job. Last year he was in Denver, but didn't make it onto the field.
 
Seattle's move has been met with a lot of criticism, largely due to the team's decision to pass on former San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick. While Kaepernick has not played to the same level he did when he got the 49ers to a Super Bowl and lost to Seattle the following year in the NFC Championship, his numbers weren't bad in 2016. Kaepernick threw for 16 touchdowns and just four interceptions with a quarterback rating north of 90.
 
Last week Carroll spoke glowingly of him.

"Colin has been a fantastic football player and he's going to continue to be," Carroll said. "He's a starter in this league. We have a starter, but he's a starter in this league and I can't imagine somebody won't give him a chance to play."

After Monday, Carroll and the Hawks are just another one of the 32 teams that isn't giving Kaepernick a chance to play. And for what reason - because he's too good? In essence the Seahawks - in hopes of improving their roster - signed the lesser of two players. 'Don't sign Kaepernick, he's a starter in this league. Lets go with Austin Davis... because he's obviously not.'

And this from the coach and the team that hammers home the importance of competition ad nauseam. You may have heard of 'competition Wednesday', it's an often used name for that particular day of practice during game weeks. In order to prepare themselves for the challenges they will face on Sundays they crank up the level of competition during the week. 
 
Kaepernick would seemingly amp that up, raising the challenge for the defense, and giving Russell Wilson a push in practice. After all, competition breeds success. 
 
On top of that, Wilson is coming off a season where he struggled with injuries for the first time in his career. That is thanks in large part to Seattle's patchwork offensive line, which they haven't done much to address this offseason.
 
Wouldn't it make sense to sign a backup they know can play at a high level? 
 
So what's the issue? One logical reason why the Hawks might have backed off is salary. But Bleacher Report NFL columnist Mike Freeman tweeted that Kaepernick not getting signed because of salary demands is a 'straight up lie'. That tweet was retweeted by Kaepernick himself. Pro Football Talk has a column saying salary disagreements is not an issue.

So that brings us back to the conversation that always surrounds Kaepernick - his protest of social injustices in the United States during the National Anthem last year. Many believe that is the reason he can't get on a roster, even though Kaepernick said he won't kneel anymore. Seattle was even among the teams that followed his lead in their own manner in 2016.
 
When asked Carroll said he didn't know if that's why Kaepernick is out of a job, and had very good things to say about the man himself after their meeting.
 
"Great kid, he communicates well. He's got a big world that he's living in. He's an NFL quarterback, he's got other issues that he's concerned about," Carroll said Friday. "He's capable of being a championship guy. He's demonstrated that over years. He's been up and down in his career some, but he's shown enough ups that you know that he can do that."
 
There's always stuff behind the scenes we're not privy to, but based on what we know - the fact that he can play; Carroll and his players appear to like him; Seattle could use a backup; and money isn't an issue - passing on Colin Kaepernick for Austin Davis just doesn't make sense. But the Hawks move on with their backup - and a guy their coach says is talented enough to be a starter, is still on the sideline.
 
I'd love to know what you think, agree or disagree, let me know on Twitter @DarnayTripp.

 

© 2017 KREM-TV


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