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Teams having conversations with associates of Colin Kaepernick

As interested teams continue to do research on Colin Kaepernick, there are conversations happening with friends and associates of the free-agent quarterback, NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported Friday, per sources familiar with those conversations.

NFL Network's Michael Silver reported earlier this week that multiple teams have interest in Kaepernick, which led to a report that no team has reached out directly to the quarterback's camp.

Garafolo reported on NFL Total Access, however, that teams are getting closer to making a potential move.

"Teams are circling around here getting closer, I believe, certainly closer than they've been in recent years," Garafolo said on NFL Network. "Now you might say why not just go directly to Kaepernick, go directly to his agent? Why do you have to play this game where you're working the periphery -- just more of the same? That would be a fair point. My understanding, at least to explain it from a team's perspective, is they're still doing their homework, still doing their research. When they get to the point where they're confident enough that they think they can work out a contract, that's when there'll be direct communication with the agent. But for now … we all see more positive signs that Kaepernick could be back in the league soon."

Kaepernick has not played in the NFL since the 2016 season when he protested social injustice and police brutality in the U.S. by kneeling during the national anthem.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said earlier this month that he encourages a team to sign Kaepernick.

"If he wants to resume his career in the NFL, then obviously it's gonna take a team to make that decision," Goodell during an interview on ESPN. "But I welcome that, support a club making that decision and encourage them to do that."

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