The whole "What did Colin Kaepernick say to get an inappropriate language penalty?" story probably would have died right away if Kaepernick had come clean.
Kaepernick said he didn't say anything to cause the 15-yard inappropriate language penalty two weeks ago against Chicago, which was a ridiculous claim and added unnecessary intrigue. Then the official who called the penalty, likely wanting to clear his own name, said the 49ers quarterback "knows what he said." Fox Sports' Jay Glazer reported, citing an unnamed official, that Kaepernick said the N-word (which was the logical guess anyway), and then Kaepernick said he said something to Bears defensive end Lamarr Houston on the play, but it was nothing "racially derogatory."
Houston has now said that yes, Kaepernick called him the N-word. He said that to the Chicago Tribune's Brad Biggs after Monday's game. Houston was flagged for inappropriate language on Monday but said the official thought he was cussing at Jets running back Chris Johnson when he just shouted at him to "back up."
Houston said he made Kaepernick mad in the Week 2 game by saying "Nice pass," after a Kyle Fuller interception. Houston told the Tribune that Kaepernick then swore at him and used the N-word. Kaepernick was fined $11,025 for the penalty.
“He was just saying inappropriate language,” Houston told the Tribune.
The Tribune said when asked if he was insulted by it, Houston said it was a “cultural thing.”
The NFL is having its officials enforce the inappropriate language penalty that was already in the rule book, with an emphasis on eliminating racial slurs.
The Kaepernick story, and the way it has continued to get reported on, probably shines a bigger light on whether inappropriate language needs to be monitored by NFL officials, who already have a tough time managing everything they need to keep an eye on. While the effort to get rid of racial slurs probably is wise for the NFL, does anyone really believe that bad words aren't said on the field during a football game?
The NFL tries to micromanage everything (insert joke here about how they might want to spend more time on some bigger issues) and now Kaepernick and whatever bad word he might have said in the heat of a football game is in the spotlight for it.
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