The next preseason game the Niners will have is potentially the most important one of the year. The third preseason game of the year is usually considered to be the rehearsal game for the regular season for all 32 NFL teams. It’s also a game in which the later round players have before the teams first set of cuts come and the roster is trimmed from 90 players to 75. Blaine Gabbert and Colin Kaepernick are most likely safe from being one of those players. Both are considered to be in a battle for the starting spot; though Kaepernick has not yet played a down in the preseason yet due to arm fatigue.
Not much has been said in the way of just how many snaps Kaepernick would take against the Packers and whether or not he would run with the 1’s. Considering that Blaine Gabbert has had all of the first team snaps since OTA’s and training camp, and has also had all the first team reps in each of the first two preseason games, it appears, at least on the surface, that Colin Kaepernick has some big time catching up to do. It would be very tough to justify giving him the Week 1 start over Gabbert with just a few series of observation.
I guess he could take the 2nd and 3rd quarters of work pending on how he is feeling. But that is the largest question mark and will be throughout the course of this week’s practices.
But would four or five series be enough body of work for Kap? I mean, I suppose if he went 10/10 with a couple touchdowns and went crazy running the ball, it could get him back in the conversation; however, that’s unlikely considering how much time he has sat out. How would an extremely small sample size in one game be enough to warrant a start against the Rams on Monday Night Football? It just does not seem practical.
Blaine Gabbert has not exactly set the preseason on fire but he has not been detrimental in terms of taking any sacks or throwing any interceptions. While he has started off slowly in initial drives, when the offense has kicked in to an up tempo no-huddle, he along with the rest of the offense has moved the ball rather well.
Statistically, as things stand, Gabbert is 10 for 19, 133 yards, 1 TD, no INT’s and no sacks in 8 series’ of action; less than 2 quarters. He has also had a few nice scrambles to move the chains.
Chip Kelly has not tipped his hand in what he might do in this game with the quarterbacks and what they might do. With 4 quarterbacks, it may even be conceivable that they each get 1 quarter of action. From the sounds of things now, they are not rushing Kaepernick in pressing his arm and will take things day by day. He did throw some passes in warm-ups prior to the game this past weekend.
As the week goes on, I am sure more developments will reveal themselves but as things stand, Gabbert is still the starter and Kap will have to blow him out of the water in these last two games of the preseason in order to earn the starting spot behind center.
What do you think Niners fans? What will it take for Kaepernick to earn the starting job?