The collusion lawsuits separately filed by Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid against the NFL have been settled, according to a joint public statement by the league and attorney Mark Geragos.
Kaepernick, the ex-San Francisco 49ers quarterback, sued the league in October of 2017, claiming that his continued unemployment was the result of teams colluding against him because of his political beliefs, not playing ability. Reid filed a similar complaint against the league last May.
"For the past several months, counsel for Mr. Kaepernick and Mr. Reid have engaged in an ongoing dialogue with representatives of the NFL. 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 by either party," the statement reads.
The NFL Players Association released its own statement confirming the settlement: "Today, we were informed by the NFL of the settlement of the Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid collusion cases,” the NFLPA's statement reads. “We are not privy to the details of the settlement, but support the decision by the players and their counsel. 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. 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.”
Kaepernick and Reid first knelt during the national anthem to protest police brutality and social inequality in the 2016 season, Kaepernick's last in the NFL, after opting out of his deal with the 49ers. Kaepernick's former teammate and partner in protest, Eric Reid, played in 2017 but went unsigned last offseason until the Carolina Panthers brought him on in October. Reid recently signed a three-year, $22 million extension to remain with the team.
It's reasonable to believe that there is a significant financial agreement as part of this settlement, which comes shortly before the two sides were expected to make final appearances in front of an arbitrator. Interestingly, the settlement comes one day after an AP report that Kaepernick wanted $20 million to join the new professional football league, the AAF, surfaced.
But because of the confidentiality agreement, it's unclear whether the specifics of the settlement deal will be made public. What's clearer is that Kaepernick, who since suing the league has become the face of Nike and just forced the mighty NFL to cry uncle, comes out looking better than the league that formerly employed him.