Austin Davis is no Colin Kaepernick, and that suits Seahawks just fine
The Seahawks added another quarterback Monday, one who could end their pursuit of Colin Kaepernick. It worked last year, so why not in 2018?
Austin Davis is officially back in the Seahawks locker room, and there is much rejoicing. Okay, I know there really isn’t, but there should be. He’s no Colin Kaepernick, and in at least two ways, that’s exactly the point.
The smaller comparison is the contract. Details haven’t been released yet, but his deal last year was for $855,000 with just $50,000 guaranteed. I can’t see that he would have gotten a much bigger deal this time around, especially as he wasn’t exactly snapped up in the early going of free agency. Kaepernick isn’t likely to sign for anything close to that.
The bigger comparison is in their social presence. Kaepernick is a polarizing figure. In case you missed it somehow, the Seahawks postponed his workout reportedly because he wouldn’t assure the team he’d stop his on-field protests. To the best of my knowledge, the only thing Austin Davis might protest is a blindside hit. That’s apparently another advantage for him, as the Seahawks see things now.
And that’s apparently what the Seahawks want right now. You’ll recall the Seahawks met with Kaepernick before the 2017 season, and wound up signing Austin Davis. This was despite the fact that Kaepernick is a much better quarterback. That isn’t a knock on Davis. I’ve written more than once Davis is a much better quarterback than his 3-7 starting record shows. By the way, two of those losses were for Cleveland. I’m pretty sure there’s a by-law in the collective bargaining agreement that absolves all quarterbacks from any Browns losses.
Austin Davis is the anti-Kap in many ways
We ran a followup article to that piece just ten days later when the Seahawks signed Davis. I could have cheated and just run it again, as neither Kaepernick’s nor Davis’s stats have changed one bit. Okay, Austin Davis got into three games, but he didn’t attempt a single pass. You’ll note the photo is from a preseason game. Kaepernick had exactly as many attempts as Davis did last year. They are still basically polar opposites on the field. Davis is a classic drop-back passer, and Kaepernick is definitely in the Wilson mold.
I like Davis, but I would still rather have Colin Kaepernick as a backup. One of those two players has a career interception percentage of 1.8 percent. One of them has a career passer rating of 88.9 with three seasons over 90. Of the two quarterbacks, only one has 2,300 yards rushing with a 6.1 yard average. Austin Davis is a fine backup, but he isn’t the guy who mimics what Russell Wilson does. Kap is a perfect fit for the Seahawks.
The biggest fit the Seahawks are looking for just might be for image
Well, except for this one little thing. Off the field, Davis does a much better job of mimicking Wilson. Russell Wilson is the consummate pro in the eyes of NFL ownership. That goes even with the much more liberal Seahawks. He always says the right thing, and while he certainly speaks out about injustice, he’s careful to phrase his views in appealing ways, as he did in September last year:
"“There are so many guys across the league who want to do good things and do do good things … without aggression and peacefully. It was sad to see that. You think about people who have gone through stuff, from Michael Bennett to people across the country. It’s a serious issue and it can’t be taken lightly, and I feel like honestly it’s being taken lightly. I think we have to be able to show love to make a difference in the world. I think it starts at the top and it starts in our communities, too.”"
The issue of course is social injustice and inequality. Colin Kaepernick deals with this issue differently, and it seems the Seahawks aren’t willing to deal with his methods. So for now, 2018 looks like it will be an instant replay of 2017 on the Seattle bench. Your clipboard is waiting, Mr. Davis.