Doug Baldwin completely understood why the Seattle Seahawks brought Colin Kaepernick in for a visit.
He also understands why Austin Davis, and not Kaepernick, was signed as the latest backup quarterback option for the Seahawks.
“I think it’s simple. It’s the business of the NFL. Right now you have a lot of young guys that are looking for opportunities,” Baldwin said Tuesday as Seattle continued its second week of OTAs. “The organizations, they’re going to be giving the younger guys the first and second look. They know what Colin can do. They know he’s a starter in this league. They’re going to give every opportunity for the young guys to compete, show their talents, and then whatever falls he’ll get his opportunities once all this dust settles.”
For much of the offseason Seattle seemed the logical destination for Kaepernick – from its style of offense to the outspokenness of its locker room. But coach Pete Carroll didn’t commit to Kaepernick last week and the team signed Davis on Monday to compete with Trevone Boykin to back up Russell Wilson.
That left Kaepernick unemployed, for now. Baldwin, who was in regular communication with Kaepernick last season as the quarterback knelt during the national anthem to protest police brutality and the treatment of minorities, said he believes Kaepernick’s stance last season is likely playing a small role in his continued unemployment, but it’s not the primary reason.
“To some degree, but I think that’s really minor,” Baldwin said. “There are 32 teams out there. Not all of them really care about that. I have no doubt in my mind he’ll have a job here rather quickly.”
Davis took part in his second OTA with the Seahawks on Tuesday. He is in his sixth NFL season after entering the league as an undrafted free agent out of Southern Mississippi in 2012.
Davis has appeared in 13 regular-season games with the Rams and Browns, including 10 starts. He has thrown for 2,548 yards with 13 touchdowns and 12 interceptions and spent part of last season with Denver.
“He’s a great kid. I haven’t been able to spend too much time with him, but we’ll see how he does,” Baldwin said.
Baldwin also addressed the relationships in Seattle’s locker room that have become highlighted this offseason. Most of that has centered on cornerback Richard Sherman after the Seahawks openly talked ahead of April’s draft about possibly trading the former All-Pro cornerback, but a suitable deal never materialized.
That was followed by recent stories of a locker room divide largely driven by Sherman’s struggles in getting past the Super Bowl loss to New England in 2015 when Wilson was intercepted in the end zone in the final minute.
Baldwin said he didn’t believe Seattle’s locker room was that different from others around the league. If there is a difference, Baldwin said, it’s the environment created by Carroll and general manager John Schneider that allows individuality.
“If I’m speaking candidly, yes, do we have issues in our locker room, do we have arguments or disagreements? Of course. Every locker room does,” Baldwin said. “What I think makes our locker room so great is that we are transparent, we are up front with each other, we do hold each other to a high standard of accountability. Yeah, sometimes from the outside it doesn’t look healthy. But I think that’s why we’ve been successful.”
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