When will the NFL realize the Kaepernick issue isn’t going away?

Most of my younger readers have probably never heard of Frank Serpico.

He was a New York City police officer whose campaign against police corruption was chronicled in the 1973 movie “Serpico.’’ He was played by Al Pacino. It’s a very good movie, by the way.

Anyway, it turns out Serpico is now 81 and still an idealist.

He turned out at a rally Saturday of about 75 mostly minority police officers who gathered in Brooklyn wearing black shirts reading “imwithkap.’’

Kap, of course, is Colin Kaepernick, the quarterback who remains unsigned after refusing to stand for the national anthem last year.

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Horrific practice underscores Bortles’ shaky status with Jaguars

Ryan Mallett of the Baltimore Ravens showed Friday that quarterbacks sometimes have a meltdown in training camp.

He threw “at least five interceptions,’’ according to reports from the Ravens’ training camp, and almost threw two more.

“Tell (offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg) to tell Mallett to throw to the guys wearing the purple (offensive) jerseys,” Terrell Suggs said.

Mallett even threw a white towel in the air after the last one.

Blake Bortles of the Jaguars matched it Saturday night in the team’s first padded practice before more than 4,000 season-ticket holders invited to practice.

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Gruden’s constant hints of coaching return now beyond tiresome

It won’t be long before Jon Gruden will have more years in the broadcast booth than he spent on NFL sidelines as a head coach.

Gruden coached 11 years in the NFL, four with the Raiders and seven with the Buccaneers. He won one Super Bowl.

Now he’s entering his ninth year as an ESPN announcer, and by 2019, his announcing career will have lasted as long as his coaching career. And then maybe even longer.

That means his coaching career is probably over. Teams aren’t likely to hire a coach who hasn’t been on the sidelines for nine years.

And the Bucs are putting him in their Ring of Honor, a sign they think his coaching days are over. But for some reason, Gruden likes to keep his name in the coaching mix. It sounds like an ego thing.

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Arians’ new book, like the man himself, is a breath of NFL coaching fresh air

In the new book by Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians called “The Quarterback Whisperer,’’ Arians compliments Chuck Pagano of the Indianapolis Colts while giving a not-so-positive evaluation of many of his colleagues.

‘’There are a lot of assholes in the world of coaching – backstabbing is common and a lot of guys have personal agendas – but Chuck isn’t one of them,’’ Arians wrote in the book he did with Lars Anderson. “He’s a good, decent, hard-working man who is also a hell of a coach.’’

Most coaches wouldn’t talk about their fellow coaches the way Arians did.

But then Arians isn’t most coaches. He speaks his mind.

That is why his book is interesting. He doesn’t sugarcoat things.

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NFL’s scheduling greed is finally taking a toll

Is the NFL suffering from oversaturation?

That is a question asked a lot last year when the NFL’s TV ratings dropped, although the league blamed first-half plummet on all the interest in the presidential election.

That’s why the ratings will be watched closely this year.

But it’s not the only barometer the NFL and its broadcast partners will be watching. The league also has to be concerned that advertisers aren’t rushing to make buys even before the season begins.

According to Advertising Age, some insiders say the ad buys are the softest since the 2008 recession.

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