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Colin Kaepernick agrees to settle collusion case against the NFL

"The resolution of this matter is subject to a confidentiality agreement so there will be no further comment," both sides said in a joint statement.
Image: Colin Kaepernick
Colin Kaepernick #7 of the San Francisco 49ers looks on from the sidelines during the second half against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Georgia on December 18, 2016.Scott Cunningham / Getty Images file

Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick has settled his collusion grievance against the NFL, lawyers for the athlete and the league said Friday.

Kaepernick and former teammate Eric Reid, who both took knees during the national anthem before games in 2016 as a way to protest systematic racism, had filed the grievance against the league for allegedly colluding against them to keep them from playing.

"For the past several months, counsel for Mr. Kaepernick and Mr. Reid have engaged in an ongoing dialogue with representatives of the NFL," according to a statement by their lawyers, Mark Geragos and Ben Meiselas.

"As a result of those discussions, the parties have decided to resolve the pending grievances. The resolution of this matter is subject to a confidentiality agreement so there will be no further comment," said the statement, which was also released by the NFL.

Kaepnernick has not been signed by any team since he left the 49ers after the 2016 season. Reid has continued to play, with the 49ers in 2017 and the Carolina Panthers in the most recent season.

"We are not privy to the details of the settlement, but support the decision by the players and their counsel," the NFL Players Association said.

"We continuously supported Colin and Eric from the start of their protests, participated with their lawyers throughout their legal proceedings and were prepared to participate in the upcoming trial in pursuit of both truth and justice for what we believe the NFL and its clubs did to them."

Reid recently signed a contract extension with the Panthers, and the union urged a team to pick up Kaepernick.

"We are glad that Eric has earned a job and a new contract, and we continue to hope that Colin gets his opportunity as well," the NFLPA said.

Kaepernick, 31, has now been off the field for two years after playing six seasons for the 49ers.

He was drafted in 2011 from the University of Nevada and took over as the starting quarterback halfway through the 2012 season. He led his team to the 2013 Super Bowl and the 2014 NFC championship game.

Despite being out of pro football, Kaepernick has remained a key civil rights figure. Nike tailored a marketing campaign around him this past September, coining the phrase: "Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything."

President Donald Trump made Kaepernick one of his stump speech targets in 2017, calling the silent protests "disgraceful."

Vice President Mike Pence attended a 49ers-Indianapolis Colts game on Oct. 8, 2017 and left moments after the anthem when nearly two dozen San Francisco players took a knee.

Several entertainers reportedly declined to perform at the Super Bowl as a way to show solidarity with Kaepernick.

The newly formed Alliance of American Football, with teams in eight cities, reached out to Kaepernick and Tim Tebow but neither one of them signed on to join the organization.