49ers offensive review: Kaepernick managed the game

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49ers offensive review: Kaepernick managed the game

It was probably the most thorough 49ers performance against a good team this season, as they had their way in a 32-7 victory over the Chicago Bears on Monday night.The 49ers had standout play on offense, defense and special teams.Let's start with the offense. And let's kick if off with a look at the performance of Colin Kaepernick, who tied a 49ers record for most yards passing in a first start. Jeff Garcia had 243 yards in his 1999 debut, a 24-22 win against the Tennessee Titans.MAIOCCO: Harbaugh considers Kaepernick's 'hot hand'
--Kaepernick threw the ball with accuracy, considering the level of difficulty of some of his throws. He completed 16 of 23 attempts. Kaepernick also did a very good job of being a game manager. And, trust me, that term is not being used in a derogatory manner.According to Pro Football Focus, Kaepernick completed 3 of 4 attempts 20 yards or more down the field for 111 yards. While being blitzed, Kaepernick was 7 of 10 with one touchdown and a 144.6 rating.He had a clean pocket from which to throw for most of the game. On his 57-yard pass to Kyle Williams in the first quarter, Right tackle Anthony Davis handled Israel Idonije and left tackle Joe Staley guided Corey Wooten to the outside to allow Kaepernick plenty of room to make the throw. And Kaepernick's throw to Williams was absolutely perfect.RATTO: 49ers' fan base proclaims Kaepernick the Baby Jesus
--Kaepernick appeared to do a good job at the line of scrimmage with his decisions in situations in which he received two play calls in the huddle. Kaepernick appeared to receive some help from Frank Gore late in the first quarter to kill a play, which resulted in 12-yard completion to Randy Moss.On the first play of the second half, Kaepernick made two adjustments with his presnap read and Gore gained 11 yards around left end.--Kaepernick enabled tight end Vernon Davis to have his best game in a while. He made a couple of throws that Davis would not ordinarily see go his way. The best example of that was in the fourth quarter. It was a third-and-12, and the Bears showed an all-out blitz. Idonije and Brian Urlacher backed off into coverage at the snap of the ball, but that left Lance Briggs coming inside on a blitz. Kaepernick threw to Davis in a window between Idonije and Urlacher, and in front of safety Major Wright. The play went for 11 yards and failed to pick up a first down, but Kaepernick's throw rightfully impressed Davis, who compared it to something he'd see from Tom Brady.--Kaepernick also showed a lot on a 10-yard touchdown pass to Michael Crabtree in which he looked right, scanned the middle of the field, slid to the right and found Crabtree working his way back across the end zone.--Crabtree made a great individual effort on a third-and-11 in the second quarter when Kaepernick hit in him stride on a slant pattern. He broke the tackle attempt of Wright at the 25-yard line and carried cornerback Tim Jennings for another 7 yards to pick up the first down on 20-yard play to the 11-yard line.--Kaepernick put a pass to Mario Manningham on a third-quarter slant in a perfect spot. He appeared to underthrow Manningham by design to direct him away from the teeth of the Bears defense. Manningham caught the pass, stopped and made a pivot away from three Bears defenders to gain 28 yards after the catch with a run down the left sideline.RATTO: For the 49ers, it's a full-blown QB controversy
--The 49ers' pass protection was very good. Of course, the offensive line had a very strong game, but Gore was also very good in pass protection. Gore got enough of Julius Peppers to slow him up on the first play of the game, an 8-yard pass to Manningham.--Gore leveled Briggs on a blitz on Kaepernick's 3-yard touchdown pass to Vernon Davis. Also on that play, fullback Will Tukuafu picked up Urlacher up the middle.--Right guard Alex Boone and Staley graded out highly in PFF's rating system. Boone gave up no quarterback disruptions. Fullback Bruce Miller and tight end Delanie Walker also had good games as blockers.--Right tackle Anthony Davis pushed Peppers inside to open a lane for Gore to pick up 13 yards near the end of the first quarter. --Walker had a big block on nose tackle Stephen Paea to create a hole for Gore to gain 14 yards up the middle. Walker was again inconsistent catching the football. He bobbled a perfectly thrown pass early in the game but still gained 9 yards. Later, he dropped a pass from Kaepernick inside the 5-yard line.--Center Jonathan Goodwin got bested on an inside move from Paea to stop Gore for a 6-yard loss. But Goodwin had a good game from that point on, as he repeatedly got to the second level. He made good blocks on Briggs on plays that gained 13 and 14 yards up the middle.--Kendall Hunter played only 11 offensive snaps, but he made the most of them with 27 yards and a touchdown on five rushing attempts. He got off to a good start when he broke through Urlacher at the line of scrimmage around the right side to pick up 6 yards.--Hunter scored on a 14-yard TD run in the second quarter, as Kaepernick gave him on the ball on a read option. Staley did a good job on defensive tackle Henry Melton down the field, and Hunter broke through Wooten tackle attempt at the 10-yard line.--The Bears picked up two sacks. One came on an odd play call in which Hunter was dropped on apparent halfback pass attempt. The other sack came when Wooten beat Anthony Davis to the outside and Idonije got past Mike Iupati and Gore's chip attempt.

Cosell: It's fascinating that Kelly clearly didn't want Kaepernick to throw

Cosell: It's fascinating that Kelly clearly didn't want Kaepernick to throw

Colin Kaepernick was benched after three quarters on Sunday.

He completed 1-of-5 passes for four yards.

"To me, what's most fascinating about that is what Chip's approach was," Greg Cosell said on KNBR 680 on Monday evening. "Chip (Kelly) clearly did not want him to throw the ball ... it was clear to me that Kaepernick does not throw a wet or a cold ball very well...

"He has small hands so I'm wondering if he just couldn't really throw the ball effectively in this kind of weather.

"Hey, Troy Aikman always said, 'I couldn't throw a wet ball.'"

Kaepernick was sacked five times for -25 total yards.

"Looking at the sacks, there were opportunities for tighter window, but NFL throws -- and first of all, I don't think Kaepernick is that guy under normal circumstances -- and my sense is, he didn't feel comfortable in this weather," Cosell added. "He certainly wasn't gonna cut it loose on those kinds of throws in this weather.

"Maybe Chip knew that, maybe he didn't. But to me, as I said, it's more fascinating that he didn't have him throw the ball at all."

Blaine Gabbert supplanted Kaepernick and completed 4-of-10 passes for 35 yards. He was sacked once.
 

After getting benched vs Bears, Colin Kaepernick to start vs Jets

After getting benched vs Bears, Colin Kaepernick to start vs Jets

Colin Kaepernick will remain as the 49ers’ starting quarterback on Sunday against the New York Jets.

Offensive coordinator Curtis Modkins made the announcement on Tuesday while coach Chip Kelly was in Maine for services for his father, E. Paul Kelly, who passed away on Friday.

Kaepernick has started the past seven games for the 49ers, during which time the club has gone winless. The 49ers (1-11) are on a franchise-long 11 game-losing streak.

Kaepernick went 1 of 5 on Sunday for just four yards in the 49ers’ 26-6 loss to the Chicago Bears. Kaepernick was also sacked five times for minus-25 yards before getting benched in favor of Blaine Gabbert. He became the first quarterback in NFL history to be sacked five times and have fewer than 5 yards passing in the same game.

"We have been playing really good football, good football on offense and the thing had been trending in the right direction," Modkins said. "Obviously, Sunday didn’t bear that and we’ve got to go to work today and figure out how to get it back going in a direction we had it and obviously it has to be better than what it was on Sunday."

A week earlier against the Miami Dolphins, Kaepernick threw for 296 yards and three touchdowns and also rushed for 113 yards as the 49ers rolled up 475 yards of total offense.

Kelly said the 49ers made the switch at quarterback early in the fourth quarter on Sunday against the Bears in hopes Gabbert would provide a spark. Gabbert started the 49ers’ first five games of the season before Kaepernick replaced him.

"Kap is going to be the starter and we’ll go from there," Modkins said. "We just decided during the game to try to see if Blaine could give us a spark. Kap is back being the starter. It’s nothing other than that.”