Colin Kaepernick’s NFL return is closer than it has ever been since the day he left the San Francisco 49ers in 2017.
His workout with the Las Vegas Raiders was deemed to be a successful endeavour, which marked a massive step forward. Whilst no contract offer has yet come from the franchise, it is understood to have opened the doors for Kaepernick joining other teams.
Just who these teams are is still unknown, although the quarterback issues plaguing the lower half of the NFL allow us to make some fairly accurate guesses.
Yet, it may not be teams that immediately need a QB who are the best fit for Colin Kaepernick right now.
The former 49ers star notably admitted he has no qualms about returning to the league as a backup. This means we could well see a team that needs a veteran head look at Kaepernick, should he fit into their style of football.
Who are the 5 teams that best fit Colin Kaepernick’s style?
#1 Buffalo Bills
But when you look at their depth chart, it’s clear that an absolute disaster awaits the team should Allen go down with an injury. Case Keenum is very well respected across the league due to his ability to learn the playbook and be a team-first guy, whilst Matt Barkley still has a lot to prove. Neither, however, are adequate backups for Allen.
The Bills’ offense is built to play on the front-foot, utilising a pass-first mentality with Allen having the freedom to make plays with his feet. Colin Kaepernick perfectly fits that style, although nobody really knows what his level of play will be now after not competing in an NFL game since 2016.
The veteran is a player who divides political opinion, but in signing with the Bills, he would join the perfect environment where the team would rally around him.
A major reason for this is that Allen has created an inclusive culture in Buffalo that has captured the hearts of the city. Not since Scott Norwood’s missed field goal in the Super Bowl back in 1991 has the city of Buffalo rallied around one man and shown this level of spirit in supporting the Bills.
Kaepernick would do his best to support Allen and should he ever be needed, he totally fits into an offensive scheme that has been successful for the team.
#2 Kansas City Chiefs
Mahomes’ electric style of play at the position has virtually changed how QB is played in the NFL. College stars are now relying on their athleticism more than ever before to appear more pro-ready.
Colin Kaepernick started this trend, although to a far less impactful degree. He would still be a valued member of the offense should he make it into Arrowhead Stadium.
The Chiefs don’t have a lot of quality behind Mahomes in their QB room. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say the veteran would immediately arrive as the best backup option for Mahomes.
It shouldn’t take much for Kaepernick to adapt to the playbook either. He would also have incredible receiving options in Travis Kelce, JuJu Smith-Schuster and Marquez Valdes-Scantling to take all the pressure off him.
As the saying goes, anyone can put up points in an Andy Reid offense.
#3 New York Giants
New York is a media market that will eat people alive if given half the chance. Colin Kaepernick may not be a player who needs any more eyes on his career than there already is, but he has shown he is strong enough to deal with pressure.
From a footballing perspective, it is difficult to see just why the team are persisting with Daniel Jones heading into the 2022 NFL season. Jones doesn’t have what it takes, he won’t develop it and was simply a long shot that didn’t pan out for the G-Men.
Of course, the 2023 NFL Draft has an abundance of quarterback talent and the Giants would love to be in a position to select one of C.J. Stroud or Bryce Young. Yet in the year before that selection is made, Colin Kaepernick could be the perfect short-term solution to the franchise's problems.
In the offseason, the New York Giants hired Brian Daboll as Head Coach, whilst Mike Kafka joined as the Offensive Coordinator. Daboll was recently the offensive coordinator at the Bills and Kafka was an offensive coach with Andy Reid’s Chiefs.
These are two teams that have offensive styles that perfectly fit Colin Kaepernick’s style. Consequently, there is every reason to suspect the pair will try to recreate this in the Big Apple.
Kaepernick can handle media pressure and would be a great role model for a young team that has a potential superstar in Kayvon Thibodeaux on their hands. The veteran signal caller could easily be their starter in 2022, fitting in with the direction of the new coaching staff.
In many ways, this seems to be a perfect fit.
#4 Atlanta Falcons
Atlanta are in rebuilding mode and they need a quarterback after trading Matt Ryan away. Signing Colin Kaepernick on a one-year prove-it deal wouldn’t be the worst-case scenario in the world.
Kaepernick should be able to compete with Marcus Mariota and Desmond Ridder. Neither player has convinced anyone that they should take the starting job in 2022, so why not throw the veteran into the mix?
Atlanta’ best years in recent times have come when they’ve had an aggressive offense that relies on passing quality. Colin Kaepernick may not be as natural a thrower as Ryan was, but he is a tough player and would fit well into the Falcons’ approach.
Atlanta is also based in a very diverse area of Georgia and has championed equal rights and social justice for years. Kaepernick may not find a more suitable home off the field, in turn helping him settle and focus more on winning the starting jersey.
#5 Seattle Seahawks
The battles between Colin Kaepernick’s 49ers and the Seattle Seahawks live fondly in the memory of fans. With the Seattle franchise facing the prospect of a dismal year in 2022, a veteran presence wouldn’t hurt their chances.
Just what the political reaction near Washington would be for a move that brings Kaepernick back to the NFL is unclear for now. However, the veteran would be perfect for Pete Carroll.
Carroll hates losing, is super positive about his roster and believes that the team can still improve even after Russell Wilson’s trade away.
With Wilson at the helm, the Seahawks' offense was focused on quick throws out of the QB’s hands as well as Wilson keeping plays alive by running. Colin Kaepernick was adept at that during his last spell in the NFL, and would once again be a leading presence for a younger group.
Seattle are likely expecting pain in 2022, but their disappointment could be limited by a healthy and motivated Kaepernick battling for the starting job. He will be up against Drew Lock, who turned very few heads during his career in Denver.