Kaepernick and his legal team are claiming the owners violated terms of the collective bargaining agreement, specifically a clause that prohibits teams from acting together in regards to a player’s employments status.
“No Club, its employees or agents shall enter into any agreement, express or implied, with the NFL or any other Club, its employees or agents to restrict or limit individual Club decision-making,” the CBA states, adding that the clause applies to “whether to negotiate or not to negotiate with any player” and “whether to offer or not to offer a Player Contract to any player.”
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has stated on multiple occasions this season that Kaepernick is not being blackballed.
The Players Association said it will back Kaepernick in his fight against the NFL and is in the process of scheduling a conference call with his advisors for early this week.
“Our union has a duty to assist Mr. Kaepernick as we do all players and we will support him,” the NFLPA said in a statement. “The NFLPA has been in regular contact with Mr. Kaepernick’s representatives for the past year about his options and our union agreed to follow the direction of his advisors throughout that time.”
Among the teams who lost a starting quarterback this season were the Miami Dolphins. In that instance, Miami lured Jay Cutler out of retirement to be its signal-caller, citing a relationship Dolphins head coach Adam Gase and Cutler developed when both were with the Chicago Bears.
The Baltimore Ravens considered Kaepernick when Joe Flacco sustained a training camp injury but ultimately passed on signing him.
The Tennessee Titans needed a quarterback earlier this month when Marcus Mariota was injured. They opted for journeyman Brandon Weeden.
The Green Bay Packers could be in the market this week after losing Aaron Rodgers to a broken collarbone on Sunday.
Kaepernick passed for 2,241 yards with 16 touchdowns and four interceptions while fumbling a career-worst seven times with the 49ers last season. He also ran for 468 yards and two touchdowns.
In six NFL seasons, Kaepernick has passed for 12,271 yards with 72 touchdowns and 30 interceptions, adding another 2,300 yards and 13 touchdowns on the ground.
Kaepernick, who guided the 49ers to the Super Bowl following the 2012 season, has indicated he would stand for the national anthem this season.