Colin Kaepernick has an idea about the origins of the criticism he receives as a franchise quarterback in the NFL.
"Stereotypes, prejudice," the San Francisco 49ers quarterback told Bleacher Report when asked about the criticism Thursday. “Whatever you want to call it. I think between the tattoos, the way I dress, the way I talk. People don't think it should go together with a franchise quarterback or someone that's leading the team or representing the organization. At the end of the day, you have to look at, 'Are they knowledgeable? Are they doing their job?' Not what their appearance is."
Select writers have taken shots at Kaepernick for his tattoos and even more recently, wearing his hat backwards (in 2014, really?) ever since he became the 49ers starting quarterback during the 2012 season. The fourth-year star, easily one of the more dynamic QBs in football, has also been criticized for the six-year, $126 million extension he inked with the Niners in June due to its many incentive-laced stipulations.
Kaepernick, 26, is trying to take that too in stride.
"I think it's a great deal for both sides," Kaepernick added. "The NFL is a performance-based business, so you should have to perform to earn some of your money. At the same time, I realize that my success isn't just because of what I do out there. I have great teammates around me who make plays. The contract allows the organization to keep those players."
Kaepernick was only a few plays away from leading the 49ers to a win over the eventual Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks in last season’s NFC title game.
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(Photo: Rob Carr/Getty Images)