By Shawn Rice
New England Patriots at Washington Redskins 08/28/09
Bill Belichick reversing a decision to sign Colin Kaepernick after a call from President Donald Trump is false information shared by a spoof account posing as reporter Adam Schefter. There is no truth to a tweet that the New England head coach declined to pick up Kaepernick after speaking with Trump.
The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback has been without a job since starting a wave of protests during the National Anthem over social injustice. Many have blamed Kaepernick’s form of protest as a reason for why he has not been picked up by an NFL team despite lesser rated athletes taking jobs
Additionally, there is a history between Trump and Belichick. There is no truth to a rumor that the Patriots coach declined to sign Kaepernick. You can see the fake tweet below. The tweets were not sent by Schefter’s genuine Twitter account (@AdamSchefter).
The last news about Kaepernick was that he filed a lawsuit against the NFL, alleging that team owners had colluded to keep him out of the league. Kaepernick claims that his protests were the reason.
Snopes reported that a common trolling tactic on Twitter is to create an account that slightly alters the Twitter handle of a well-known personality. The @AddamScheft3r account added an extra “d” to the name and replaced an “E” with a “3.” The small changes were enough to fool those on social media.
Here are some examples of people mistaking the tweet’s rumor as real.
Wow: In a change of heart, Belichick has decided to not sign Kaepernick after a phone conversation with President Donald Trump, per source.
— ProFootballTalk (@Pr0FootballTalk) October 31, 2017
Awesome! We don’t need that racist troublemaker on our team! pic.twitter.com/g1x6hnnEUE
— Sam Wilson (@Samrufuswilson) October 31, 2017
If true, this could really help with his lawsuit against the NFL
— Daniel Santos (@dspot2003) October 31, 2017
The fake Schefter account has since been deleted and replaced with a fake account for Pro Football Talk’s Twitter account. The spoof account used the same tactic, replacing a letter with a number, to make it appear as if the tweets came from the real account. The “o” in “Pro” was replaced with a zero.
The Patriots recently traded their soon-to-be free agent Jimmy Garoppolo to the San Francisco 49ers which is Kaepernick’s old team. Of course, outlets began speculating about how the NFL needs someone to sign Kaepernick to disprove suspicions the league has blackballed the quarterback.
USA Today reported:
Despite playing on a dismal San Francisco team last year, Kaepernick kept the 49ers competitive. Put him with Belichick and Josh McDaniels, two of the league’s best quarterback whisperers, and he may resemble the quarterback he was in 2012. That’s a much better insurance plan than some guy who’s never gotten off the practice squad.
What did you think of the false rumor that Belichik refused to sign …read more
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