Seahawks' Michael Bennett: Seattle would be 'perfect place' for Colin Kaepernick
Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett says Seattle would be a "perfect place" for free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
The Seahawks are the first team to publicly show interest in Kaepernick, 29, since he became a free agent. Head coach Pete Carroll said the team was "looking at" both Kaepernick and Robert Griffin III as possible backup quarterbacks, and NFL Media's Michael Silver reported Seahawks GM John Schneider reached out to Kaepernick's agent last week. Kaepernick famously kneeled during the national anthem last season to protest racial injustice and police brutality, a demonstration that drew the ire of a number of NFL fans and GMs.
Bennett told 710 ESPN Seattle that the Seahawks and Kaepernick, who would serve as a backup to Russell Wilson, would be a great fit.
"I think a person that's dedicating their life to creating change, why wouldn't you want that type of leadership in your locker room?" Bennett said, according to ESPN. "Why wouldn't you want a young person that's dealt with people wanting to kill him because of his choices in life? So I don't know why people feel like that is a problem.
"I think that Kaepernick getting the opportunity to be on our team would be really cool, would really be a good place for him because you have a coach like coach [Pete] Carroll who is up for challenges like that. You have an owner who spends and gives back to the homeless. You've got players on your team that give back in the community. You've got Russell Wilson, who shows that our team is built around community. So this is a perfect place for him."
Kaepernick has said he won't kneel during the anthem next season, but clearly he's not planning to stop his social justice work anytime soon. The ex-49ers quarterback hosts "Know Your Rights" camps for underprivileged kids to teach them about structural racism, how to interact with law enforcement and the value of education. He is also making good on his promise to donate $1 million to various philanthropic organizations over 10 months, with beneficiaries including Meals on Wheels, 350.org and Mothers Against Police Brutality.
Bennett, a vocal supporter of Black Lives Matter, isn't the only activist on the Seahawks. Doug Baldwin has worked to improve relations between law enforcement and vulnerable communities. Seahawks cornerback Jeremy Lane joined Kaepernick's protest and sat during the national anthem before a game season, and other players publicly offered support for Kaepernick. More than most NFL teams, Pete Carroll's Seahawks seem to welcome athlete activism.
Kaepernick tossed 16 touchdowns and four interceptions in 12 games, including 11 starts, for the 49ers last season. He also rushed for 468 yards and two touchdowns.