Colin Kaepernick may not have found his way back to the playing field yet, but he'll at least be available on the virtual field for football fans.
According to The Undefeated, Kaepernick will be featured in Madden 21 as a free agent. It is his first appearance in the franchise since Madden 17.
“Colin Kaepernick is one of the top free agents in football and a starting-caliber quarterback," EA SPORTS said in a statement. "The team at EA SPORTS, along with millions of Madden NFL fans, want to see him back in our game.
“Knowing that our EA SPORTS experiences are platforms for players to create, we want to make Madden NFL a place that reflects Colin’s position and talent, rates him as a starting QB, and empowers our fans to express their hopes for the future of football. We’ve worked with Colin to make this possible, and we’re excited to bring it to all of you today.”
Kaepernick has been out of the NFL since the 2016 season, a year in which he began kneeling during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial injustice. Though his free agent status is the same as it was after 2016, Madden had not included him in the four games between Madden 17 and 21.
The reason for that, according to The Undefeated's Aaron Dodson, was because Kaepernick was not included in the game's licensing agreement negotiated with the NFL Player's Association. Ahead of this year, EA SPORTS went to Kaepernick directly to negotiate the rights to his likeness.
So now Madden players will be able to, in some form, answer the question we've all wondered for the last four years: Is Kaepernick still a starting-caliber quarterback in the NFL?