Colin Kaepernick, the quarterback-turned-activist who started the anthem protests by refusing "to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color," continues to be both unemployed and making headlines. In the latest episode of the Kaepernick saga, the NFL extended an invitation to the sidelined QB to meet one-on-one with commissioner Roger Goodell — a proposition that quickly devolved into a snarky public feud between Kaepernick's lawyer and an NFL spokesman.
Kaepernick has filed a grievance against the NFL for allegedly "colluding" to keep him unemployed in the league in "retaliation" for his "leadership and advocacy for equality and social justice and his bringing awareness to peculiar institutions still undermining racial equality in the United States." League insiders, however, have suggested that the real reason no team has picked up Kaepernick has more to do with common sense than conspiracy: No team wants to put up with the headache of hiring a politically divisive player who's also sub-par at his position.
On Wednesday ESPN reported that the NFL extended an invitation to Kaepernick to meet one-on-one with Goodell to talk about social issues, but Kaepernick's attorney, Mark Geragos, says that meeting appears to be off the table after the NFL refused to allow a mediator to attend. Geragos' statement was met with a sharp rebuke by league spokesman Joe Lockhart.
NFL executive Troy Vincent extended the invitation on Oct. 31 in a text to Kaepernick in which he also updated him on the league's discussions on social issues. Lockhart said that the league hadn't heard back from Kaepernick about the potential meeting with Goodell.
Geragos, however, said in a statement to ABC News that Lockhart's claim was not true.
"We responded immediately that Colin would be happy to attend," said Geragos. "Because of the grievance we asked that a mediator be present. A mediator also would ensure that the discussions were productive and confidential and not used as a PR stunt or prop by the league. Colin's proposal was rejected."
In response, Lockhart smacked Geragos for his "lecture on PR stunts" and pointed out that he had just violated the collective bargaining agreement.
"Mr. Geragos' statement alone violates the collective bargaining agreement, breaking the confidentiality of the grievance process," said Lockhart. "So he can save his lecture on PR stunts. The invitation remains open."
Lockhart told Yahoo Sports that the proposed meeting with Goodell "isn't part of any grievance process," but, rather, about "the overall discussion we've been having on some of these social issues."
H/T The Daily Caller