Colin Kaepernick played extremely well in the 49ers’ 32-7 win over the Chicago Bears on Monday in place of Alex Smith, and coach Jim Harbaugh indicated after the game that the team has a quarterback controversy.
Asked after San Francisco’s easy win over Chicago about the starting quarterback situation, Harbaugh made it seem like Kaepernick has a shot to remain the team’s starter.
“I usually tend to go with the guy who has the hot hand. We got two quarterbacks who have a hot hand,” Harbaugh said after the game.
When pressed on the question a second time, Harbaugh allowed the possibility of a change.
“We really have two guys that have a pretty hot hand. We’ll make that decision as we go forward.”
Kaepernick, a former second-round pick a year ago, went 16/23 for 243 yards and two touchdowns in his first career start. He also rushed for 12 yards on four attempts. He was sharp with his passes and looked in command of the team. He also made good use of Pro Bowl tight end Vernon Davis, who had six catches for 83 yards and a touchdown. Davis seemed to indicate he’d like Kaepernick to remain the starter.
“I felt like somebody took the handcuffs off me,” Davis said after the game, per Matt Maiocco.
Smith missed the game after being concussed against the St. Louis Rams in Week 10. He was 7/8 for 72 yards and a touchdown before leaving that game. The previous week, he went 18/19 for 232 yards and three touchdowns in a win over the Cardinals. Though he was playing well, Kaepernick seems to make the offense more dangerous than he does. It seems like Vernon Davis agrees. We will see if Harbaugh does.