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NFL QB Kaepernick eviscerates Twitter troll -- or does he?

Technically Incorrect: The sometimes sensitive San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick attacks someone with just 8 followers, after receiving mild criticism. Now that troll has over 2,000 followers.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


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Colin Kaepernick, troll-fighter. Hard at work. Stack/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

The notion of sound judgment seems to have deserted the San Francisco 49ers of late.

Having almost won the Super Bowl not so long ago, the team's management of affairs recently has been not unlike that of a startup run by a couple of 20-year-olds, both of whom smoke too much tainted tobacco.

Perhaps this instability is seeping further into its players' pores.

Yesterday, 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick decided to flex both his intellect and his muscle. Yes, of course it was on Twitter. Where else are you going to do it?

As CBS Sports reported, Kaepernick was attempting to impress his followers with his off-season regime. He tweeted: "1000 abs.... arm workout..... 10 min straight on the jump rope.... 2 hour study session in February..... that's what we call a recovery day!"

No sooner had he recovered from the recovery than he was working out his arm once more. For someone called Stephen Batten decided to reply. He tweeted: "ab workout won't help find open receiver." He helpfully added the hashtag #study.

Of course, Batten hadn't noticed that Kaepernick had mentioned he'd studied for two whole hours. However, Kaepernick, perhaps an imperfect student of humanity, tweeted right back: "are you illiterate or just ignorant? Read the tweet again better yet give me your breakdown of every defensive coverage."

He wasn't going to stop there. He followed it with: "I want every players responsibility on every coverage if you can't do it mind your damn business clown!"

Kaepernick was clearly enjoying firing back at Batten. For then he struck what he must have deemed the ultimate sack: "you got 8 followers bruh your own family don't even want to know what you doin! Get better at life!"

The famous NFL quarterback was, indeed, getting upset at someone with eight Twitter followers.

Some have, of course, praised him for his derring-do. Some of his 726,000 followers have lauded the fact that he struck back hard against the scourge of Twitter trolls.

However, isn't this slightly against brand? After all, it was Kaepernick who appeared in a Beats ad, in which fans said far, far worse things to him than did Batten, and the great (pretender) quarterback just put on his headphones to shut it all out.

Perhaps, when he saw Batten's tweet, he didn't have his headphones nearby.

I fancy, though, that there will be at least one amateur psychologist (and a few professionals) who will wonder whether Kaepernick's touchiness betrays a lack of self-belief. There will be those who muse why someone with 726,000 followers and a bucket-load of fame would choose to excoriate a man with 8 followers and the notoriety of a speck of dust.

In the past, Kaepernick has claimed he treats Twitter criticism as motivation. Perhaps he's not had enough of it then, as his play over the last year has been a touch confused.

There were times when he seemed not to know whether he was running or passing. Observers suggested he lacked some of the fundamentals of the quarterback position (indeed, he's spending the off-season working on some of them).

Anyone who puts their fingers above the parapet to tweet to the converted will encounter the heckling of the bystander.

But what does it say when a whale assaults a minnow?

Batten (who deleted his critical tweet) is slightly less of a minnow this morning. His follower count has risen from 8 to 2,260.