We Found the One Store Selling Kaepernick Jerseys Near CenturyLink. Emphasis Not on “Selling.”

The hottest jersey in football is still a tough sell in SoDo.

What a difference three years make.

In 2013, the San Francisco 49ers were the only thing standing between the Seattle Seahawks and Super Bowl XLVIII, and their quarterback, Colin Kaepernick, was a bling-happy superstar. Through the prism of fierce rivalry, Seahawks fans in those days saw Kaepernick as an overrated play-caller with an Air Jordans fetish, and the Niners in general as worthy of pissing on (at least according to a Beats by Dre commercial at the time).

Today, by contrast, the inept Niners are but a pesky fly the Seahawks have to swat away a couple of times a year, which they did handily on Sunday in a 38-17 rout at CenturyLink Field. And Kaepernick? He’s not even a starter. But he’s also not tweeting about his shoe collection, having transformed himself into the standard-bearer of an emergent movement of socially conscious football players who are using pregame demonstrations to raise awareness of black oppression in the United States. Soon after Kaepernick began to take a knee during the national anthem in preseason play this year, a stat emerged that suggested the nation was embracing this new version of Colin: His jersey quickly became the top-selling in the NFL.

But per usual, Seattle has had a different take on the Kaepermania. “I heard the NFL say it’s their #1 selling jersey,” says Kevin McCluskey, store manager of Sports Den on First Avenue in Pioneer Square. “But obviously not here.”

Above him hung a Kaepernick jersey with a 50-percent-off sticker, dropping the price to $54.88, well below the $150 vintage Jerry Rice jersey hanging next to it. With the Niners in town, and with them their fans, Sports Den was hoping to unload a few jerseys. But no luck. Of the four they had on Friday, three remain. Of the one guy who did buy the jersey, McCluskey says, “I think he just liked the sale price.”

An informal survey of Pioneer Square and SoDo sports shops found that the Sports Den was the only one selling the hottest jersey in football. And McCluskey says that was a fluke more than anything else. Their supplier sent them the Kaepernick jerseys by accident, and they got to keep them “essentially” for free.

It wasn’t always like this. Peter Miller, a clerk at Sports Den, says that when the rivalry was good and Kaepernick was starting, they did good business with the jersey. “They would sell out, snap snap,” he says.

But with Niners Nation laid low, the enthusiasm just isn’t there—American race relations notwithstanding. “There just weren’t any Niners fans” at the game on Sunday, says a clerk at OnTheField.com, which has a storefront on Occidental Avenue South across the street from CenturyLink. “The fewest I’ve ever seen.” That store put some Niners merch out, but not much of it moved.

With the game in the books, Sports Den will be switching out Niners gear for something else—hopefully something that sells better.

“Today is their last day up,” McCluskey says about the Kaepernick jerseys. “I’m tired of hearing the snickering. Seahawks fans will come in and snicker. It’s like, ‘It’s not my team.’ ” n