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Commissioner Oliver Luck Says Colin Kaepernick Asked for ‘Exorbitant’ Salary to Play in the XFL

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The XFL kicked off last weekend, delivering on the promise of bringing viewers spring football to make it through the NFL offseason.

While the debut of the league was relatively well received, the league could have gotten far more publicity if they signed a few star players. One of those players being Colin Kaepernick.

Kaepernick may still be polarizing, but he would clearly by the XFL’s biggest star by far. Unfortunately those talks never developed due to what XFL commissioner Oliver Luck describes as “exorbitant salary demands”.

The XFL is a startup league and has to be fiscally responsible as Luck suggests. Average player salaries in the XFL are reported to be just $55,000 for a full 10-game season, which is a far cry from the pay in the NFL.

Some of the best quarterback in the XFL are reported to potentially be making $500,000 per season, but Kaepernick was likely asking for a deal worth millions not thousands.

While the XFL did not have enough money for Kaepernick in their budget, it is fair to say that the quarterback is right to ask for what he is worth.

According to Spotrac, Kaepernick was paid north of $14 million in his last year with the San Francisco 49ers back 2016. The average backup quarterback in the NFL makes from $2-4 million.

It is safe to say that based on his skillset alone, Kaepernick should be making millions of dollars to play quarterback, regardless of the league he plays in.

Now what is more interesting is the draw that Kaepernick would be towards the XFL’s audience. The XFL drew an average of 3.3 million viewers during their debut games this weekend.

On Instagram alone, Colin Kaepernick has 3.5 million followers, showing that there is still a ton of support for the quarterback.

Landry Jones, the “face of the XFL”, doesn’t seem to have a public Instagram and only has 33,000 followers on Twitter.

Kaepernick may have his fair share of doubters who are still upset about his protest, but that does not mean that those people wouldn’t tune in to watch him play in the XFL and hope to see him fail.

This is a situation where both sides can be argued for as justified in not bringing Kaepernick to the XFL.

Kaepernick would have been a huge boost and money-maker for the XFL and would have deserved to be compensated as such.

At the same time, the XFL did not have the money to guarantee that level of a financial commitment. Also the last thing they wanted to do when trying to create a legitimate spring football league is to create a world that revolved around one player.

In the end, it was probably best for both sides that Kaepernick is not playing the league. But it is still unfortunate for the fans that want to see this once great quarterback get back on the field again.

Football

Baker Mayfield Looking to Shed Some Weight This Offseason

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After being selected with the No. 1 overall pick of 2018 NFL Draft, Baker Mayfield was a sensation for the Cleveland Browns during his rookie season.

The Browns had only won one game over the two years prior to his arrival. Yet Mayfield lead his team to a 6-7 record in his starts, making him the instant face of the franchise.

On the heels of that great season, and with the addition of Odell Beckham Jr., Mayfield was supposed to soon lead the Browns to the playoffs for the first time since 2002.

Unfortunately for Cleveland, the 2019 season was a disaster.

Mayfield was a big part of the regression of the Browns as he did not have a great season as their signal-caller.

After breaking Peyton Manning’s rookie touchdown record with 27 TD passes a year prior, Mayfield threw just 22 touchdowns this season, playing in three more games.

He was also second behind Jameis Winston for most interceptions thrown in the NFL with 21.

In an effort to get back to his better play of the past, Mayfield is focusing on losing some weight this offseason to be slimmer and faster for the upcoming season.

After watching his decline in play, it is fair to wonder if Mayfield came into his sophomore season a little complacent following his big rookie year.

Mayfield was one of the NFL’s top featured athletes when it came to endorsements and may have lost a little bit of focus on his craft.

Now it appears the chip is back on Mayfield’s shoulder once again, as he looks to prove all the doubters wrong and lead the Browns to a much better season in 2020.

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Carolina Panthers Plan to Stick with Cam Newton as Starting Quarterback

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The Carolina Panthers are going to be entering a new era next season, with Matt Rhule taking over as their head coach after Ron Rivera was fired midseason.

Rivera was at the helm in Carolina dating back to 2011, taking the team to a Super Bowl in 2015.

There has been a lot of debate as to whether the Panthers may move on from the league MVP of that 2015 season as well.

Yet as of now, it appears that Cam Newton is staying put in Carolina.

Newton was limited to just two games played last season due to a foot injury, bringing a lot of concerns of his future health to the surface.

Dual-threat quarterbacks typically age a lot faster than others and no one has taken more hits from that position that Newton since being draft No. 1 overall back in 2011.

The vote of confidence from the Panthers on Newton now could be two-fold. They may feel his injury is rehabbing well, but they also don’t have a lot of options until he can prove healthy.

Other NFL teams are going to be hesitant to trade a significant package for a quarterback that is a huge question mark going into next season. Especially with the sheer depth of options in free agency.

It would also be foolish for Carolina to give Newton anything but a vote of confidence at this point, as any indication that they are ready to move on would only lessen his trade value.

Still, Newton could play a big role in the helping the Panthers remain competitive next season.

After going 5-11 without Newton last season, the Panthers find themselves in the top-10 of the NFL Draft for just the second time since 2012.

With the seventh overall pick, a quarterback like Justin Herbert may be on the table for Carolina to select.

It will be very interesting to see how the Panthers navigate this offseason and whether contingency plans begin to be put in place for life after Cam Newton.

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Football

Everson Griffen Opts Out of Contract with the Minnesota Viking to Become Free Agent

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Over the past decade there has been few pass rushers more dynamic than Everson Griffen.

Griffen was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the fourth round of the 2010 NFL Draft and has since turned into a four-time Pro Bowler.

Now he is set to maybe wear another jersey for the first time in his career, as Griffen has opted out of his contract with the Vikings.

Through 10 seasons in Minnesota, Griffen has 74.5 sacks, 176 quarterback hits, 86 tackles for a loss and 355 total tackles.

There have been few players in the league that are harder to block than Griffen and he now gets the chance to test free agency.

After voiding his lucrative $13.5 million salary for next season, Griffen is likely looking to sign a contract of similar value through free agency.

At 32 years old, Griffen could be looking for a three-year contract worth somewhere around $45 million.

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