In an interview with WKNR AM-850, Hue Jackson said that he wanted the Browns to sign Colin Kaepernick in 2017 (via Jeff Schudel of the News Herald). The Browns, of course, did not sign him, and placed rookie Deshone Kizer under center instead.
“I wanted him,” Jackson said Friday. “It just didn’t work out. Obviously, those things do have to work from a finance, draft, whatever all that is. And that wasn’t my decision.”
Jackson may have wanted Kaepernick in 2017, but he didn’t share that opinion publicly at the time. Like most coaches, Jackson skirted questions about the QB and said that he wasn’t being discussed as a serious option. Meanwhile, Jackson didn’t have full control over the 53-man roster. Personnel decisions were ultimately made by Sashi Brown, who served as the Browns’ GM up until December of that year.
Last month, Kaepernick found himself back in the NFL news cycle when the league briefly listed him as “retired” on his remodeled player page. The following day, the NFL changed his status to reflect that he is, in fact, an unrestricted free agent. The odds of Kaepernick returning to the NFL seemed slim just a few weeks ago, but it may not be so far fetched today. Kaepernick, 33 in November, has been training with the intent of returning to the field.
“My desire to play football is still there,” Kaepernick said in February. “I still train five days a week. I’m ready to go, I’m ready for a phone call, tryout, workout at any point in time. I’m still waiting on the owners and their partners to stop running from this situation. So I hope I get a call this offseason. I’ll be looking forward to it.”
Here’s more out of Cleveland:
- Odell Beckham Jr. skipped the bulk of the Browns’ non-virtual 2019 offseason, but he’s been logging on for team activities via Zoom this year, as Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com writes. “He’s all in,’’ offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt said. “He’s bought in. He’s been there and it’s awesome. It’s good to have him there. It’s good for him.’’ Despite the constant speculation about OBJ’s status with the team, the Browns have maintained that he will be in their plans. Meanwhile, the wide receiver seems to be pretty happy with the Browns’ new regime.
- The Browns beefed up their defensive line depth this offseason, but linebacker remains a question mark, ESPN.com’s Jake Trotter writes. With Christian Kirksey and Joe Schobert out of the picture, the Browns will be relying upon a promising, yet inexperienced group that includes rookie Jacob Phillips, Sione Takitaki, and Mack Wilson. Of course, the Browns aren’t necessarily done upgrading the front seven as they continue to monitor Jadeveon Clowney‘s market.
- Earlier this week, we reflected on Mychal Kendricks‘ brief and bizarre tenure with the Browns.