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It’s easy to say that Colin Kaepernick is a lighting rod for controversy. It’s a whole different ball game to actually experience that lighting rod, which is something the Baltimore Ravens are reportedly finding out after they showed some interest in the free agent quarterback.

Michael Silver of NFL Media is reporting that Ravens have heard from “numerous” fans who have expressed their displeasure at the thought of Baltimore potentially signing Kaepernick.

This is not a huge surprise, considering Kaepernick’s stance. Some feel that his boycott of the national anthem has been bold and brave, especially considering why he’s doing it. Others have found it disrespectful both towards the country and even to the troops in the United States armed services.

Again, not a surprise, both sides have been vocal about their like or dislike of Kaepernick, though the side that dislikes him has been a bit more prone to action. Just ask New York Giants’ co-owner John Mara, who has been on the other side of some of that action. (H/T Pro Football Talk).

“All my years being in the league, I never received more emotional mail from people than I did about that issue,” says Giants co-owner John Mara, who for 24 years has worked for the team his family founded. “If any of your players ever do that, we are never coming to another Giants game. It wasn’t one or two letters. It was a lot. It’s an emotional, emotional issue for a lot of people, moreso than any other issue I’ve run into.”

Ultimately, the Ravens may never end up signing Kaepernick. Joe Flacco is out with a back injury right now, and though how long he’ll be out for is up in the air, he reportedly doesn’t feel like he’s going to miss any of the 2017 season.

The Ravens may not need Kaepernick, though that can’t be said for every other team in the NFL. Some could certainly use a player of his caliber — even as a backup — as diminished as it has been over the past few seasons.

With fan backlash sure to swift, though, it’s no surprise that most NFL franchises are cowering at the thought of adding Kaepernick onto their respective rosters.

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