The 49ers play the Falcons Sunday at the Georgia Dome. In the meantime, I’ll break down the key matchups.
WLB Sean Weatherspoon vs. QB Colin Kaepernick.
On passing downs, like third down and second-and-long, the Falcons will put a “spy” on Colin Kaepernick. That spy will be Atlanta’s fastest linebacker, Sean Weatherspoon.
The Green Bay Packers did not spy Kaepernick, and he scrambled five times for 75 yards. It will be Weatherspoon’s job to keep Kaepernick in the pocket on Sunday. If Kaepernick runs, it will be Weatherspoon’s job to catch him and hit him hard.
Weatherspoon is fast – he runs a 4.53 40-yard dash – but he’s not as fast as Kaepernick, who runs a 4.43.
Weatherspoon is quick, and he can catch faster guys in short spaces. Remember, Weatherspoon knocked out Robert Griffin III back in Week 5, and Griffin is faster than Kaepernick.
Spying Kaepernick may limit his scrambling yards, but it should give the 49ers’ receivers one-on-one matchups and open up the passing game.