According to The Wall Street Journal, the NFL paid less than $10 million to settle the collusion grievances filed against them by Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid. While no concrete figure had been publicized, the sub-$10 million figure is significantly below previously reported rumors of a sum between $60-80 million. It's also unclear, at this time, how exactly the money will be split between the players, and also how much they'll even have to split after legal fees are assessed.
As the Journal wrote:
Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid, the NFL stars who alleged the league’s teams colluded to keep them off the field after they led protests during the national anthem, will receive less than $10 million to settle grievances with the league, according to people briefed on the deal.
Though you're likely familiar, Kaepernick and Reid had accused the league of blackballing them after they began kneeling to highlight social awareness and racial injustice. In October 2018 Reid was signed by the Carolina Panthers (and even got a three-year extension with the team in February), while Kaepernick has been out of the NFL since the end of the 2016 season.
Had Kaepernick won his grievance he could've acquired damages worth significantly more than what an arbitrator said he lost when teams (allegedly) colluded against him.
Initial news of the settlement was framed as a win for the players, and many people weighed in with congrats to the ex-Niners signal caller for making the NFL pay up.
“I’m happy to see the news come out yesterday that he won his suit,” LeBron James said after the news hit. “I hope it’s a hell of a lot of money that can set not only him up but set his family up, set his grandkids up for the rest of their lives. I hope the word of what he did will live on throughout American history.”
While Kaepernick's payout appears to be significantly lower than initially thought, legal experts say he would've had a tough time winning his grievance had he not settled. Kaepernick had argued that every team in the league was shutting him out due to his activist stance, and he had also argued that it was a "statistical impossibility" that he remained a free agent.
However, the burden of proof would've been on him and he would have had to show that there was a coordinated effort to prevent him from getting a contract. A previous Wall Street Journal report says that deposed NFL owners indicated that public pressure from President Trump caused them to shift their stances on the issue.
Neither an NFL spokesman, nor a lawyer for the players issue a comment to the WSJ, citing the resolution's confidentiality agreement.