Top 5 things Kaepernick does not do well

This is my list of the top-five things Colin Kaepernick does not do well. I’d be interested in reading your list.

1. Throw accurately. His completion percentage during the regular season was 58.4, fourth-worst among the 28 quarterbacks who played more than 600 snaps. Only three QBs were less accurate than Kaepernick — Eli Manning, Terrelle Pryor and Geno Smith. During the playoffs, Kaepernick’s completion percentage dropped to 54.9, the lowest completion percentage of all 12 QBs who played in the playoffs. You have to wonder if Kaepernick would complete less than 50 percent of his passes if he couldn’t throw to Anquan Boldin and Michael Crabtree, big receivers with great hands who can catch imperfectly thrown passes. What percentage of Kaepernick’s passes would he complete if he had to throw to small receivers like Doug Baldwin and Golden Tate, the receivers Russell Wilson throws to?

2. Set and re-set his feet in the pocket. Kaepernick may have the worst pocket footwork of any starting quarterback in the NFL.  If a pass rusher comes close to him, Kaepernick seems more than happy to throw off his back foot — that’s what happened on the final play of the NFC Championship against the Seahawks. When Kaepernick’s first read isn’t open, he loses all technique and relies on his speed and his arm-strength to bail him out, like an infielder racing toward home plate to throw out a bunter. Kaepernick rarely syncs his lower body with his upper body, and he does not re-set his feet and scan the field like other quarterbacks do. I’ve never even seen Kaepernick practice doing that. But I’ve seen Drew Brees and Russell Wilson practice doing that before every game I’ve seen them play in person.

3. See the entire field during the play. Every game last season, it seemed there was at least one play when Kaepernick did not see Vernon Davis wide open sprinting deep, or Kaepernick didn’t see some other receiver who was wide open. That’s because Kaepernick tends to decide to whom he’s going to throw before the center snaps the ball. That’s part of the reason he struggles so severely inside the opponent’s 10-yard line — 54.2 passer rating. Kaepernick doesn’t seem to see everything and he doesn’t seem comfortable making decisions during plays. Great quarterbacks see everything and  make decisions during plays.

4. Throw with touch. Every pass Kaepernick throws is a rocket. Bill Walsh would disapprove. Kaepernick does not throw a ball that is easy to catch, does not throw with touch. That contributes to his innaccuracy and his poor passing numbers near the opponent’s goal line

5. Improve his weaknesses. Other than slightly speeding up his throwing release and learning how to take snaps and drop back from under-center, Kaepernick has not improved any of his weaknesses. Somehow, he got less accurate from 2012 to 2013. The best athletes work maniacally to eliminate their weaknesses. Think of LeBron James working offseason after offseason to improve his jump shot. But I’m not sure Kaepernick believes he has any weaknesses. I’d guess he would disagree with every word I’ve written in this post.  Forget me, Kaepernick even disagrees with Joe Montana. Joe Montana said Kaepernick needs to improve as a pocket passer, and Kaepernick’s response was, “I think pocket passing is something that is overlooked as far as what I do,” and, “I don’t think that’s something that specifically is being addressed.” If Kaepernick can’t take constructive criticism from Montana, who can Kaepernick take it from?

  1. Good article Grant. Especially the end with the Montana piece. Hopefully he works on his craft like he does his physical attributes

  2. Good stuff Grant. Just a couple of comments:
    - With regards to “Throw accurately”, I would say it should be “Throw accurately consistently”. He can be very accurate when he’s on a roll. However, his fundamentals let him down when he’s not hot.
    - Setting and re-setting his feet is pretty much the main cause of his accuracy issues – for me it is the same issue.
    - In terms of improving weaknesses, he hasn’t done a good job in the areas we believe he has weaknesses. But at the end of last season he hadn’t gone through any rough patches, and hadn’t had much of an opportunity to figure out what he needed to work on. It will be very telling to watch him early next season to see if he’s worked on his footwork and progressions.

    1. excellent point scooter. I also think that having a sophomore slump is very normal for NFL starting qbs. And if this was the slump year then I think that Kap has a bright future.

  3. ok, fair enough. So how does he and the coaching staff fix these? And shouldn’t there be more criticism of Roman/Harbaugh for not working enough on these?

    1. I don’t think anyone outside of the organization has any idea how much the coaches have worked with/tried to work with Kaepernick on these issues. I don’t think anyone outside of the organization has any idea how much Kaepernick has worked on these issues. Hell, we don’t even know if Kaepernick or the coaches think these are weaknesses that he needs to work on. It’s all just speculation.

      1. Speculation? Did you see any of the games he played in? We all saw what he could and could not do so no speculation here. The sad thing is he thinks he has no an addict in denial

  4. Nice points Grant.
    These issues have been hashed and rehashed for some time now.
    But to your comment regarding Kaep’ willingness to improve, he did expressly dismiss Montana’ advise. His reply was more in regards to the offensive play calling.

    Joe Montana said Kaepernick needs to improve as a pocket passer, and Kaepernick’s response was, “I think pocket passing is something that is overlooked as far as what I do,” and, “I don’t think that’s something that specifically is being addressed.”

    Kaep’ response is more in tune to Dilfer’s article a couple of months ago when he (TD) apologized for calling CK “remedial” after finding that the offensive scheme was set up to have CK make one quick read.

    I personally believe that CK will vastly improve from last year because of the experience of having to learn how to become a better pocket passer and seeing defenses scheme differently than the 2012 season.

    On another note: Not taking anything from Montana. But having Jerry Rice and John Taylor to throw too would certainly help.

    1. AES

      You’re not taking Kaep’s response to TD out of context are you. It would be highly disingenuous and perhaps ethically corrupt for a journalist to do such a thing. There’s no way Grant would do that. Kaep must have responded exactly the same way to Montana’s comment as he did to Dilfer’s. Yeah, that’s it.

    2. Well lets not forget the two superbowls he won without Jerrry Rice and John Taylor. Everyone forgets Montana made receivers better not worse. I bet a lot of people can’t remember the receivers Montana had when he took the Chiefs to the championship.

  5. some good points, Grant. Agree on footwork, touch (on shorter throws) and field vision (altho this seems more purposeful than a natural lmitation – he scanned the field pretty well at times), but last year Kaep’s accuracy on 20-35 yd throws downfield was phenomenal, and it was pretty good this past year when he could set his feet.

    i’d also suggest that Kaep must have come a long way, given that after this past year’s camp some speculation leaked into the media that Kaep might never be accurate enough to start in the NFL (this came primarily from Maiocco, ostensibly the Niner’s conduit to the public).

    some guys come into the league and are great natural qbs who fit, or fit themselves, into a system readily (that would be Joe, Marino); most others need some real work/experience to attain greatness. frankly, the jury is still out on Kaep (wrt greatness), but i’d bet heavily on him (especially when you consider the odds of finding anyone better anytime soon).

  6. Good list Grant. I’d toss in…

    3(b)- Seeing underneath coverages to his left

    6- Pre-snap reads

    7- Play clock awareness

    8- Even, calm, professional sideline demeanor. Colin is super energized when the game is going well. Goes into a shell when it’s not. He needs to even that out.

    9- Staying relaxed and focused after unsuccessful plays. When top QBs realize a play is kaput no matter what, they calmly chuck it out of bounds and seamlessly refocus. No sense of panic.

    1. i think he got a lot beter with #9 as the season went on. He started utilizing his feet a bit more and was able to elude pressure and either run for a chunk of yards or make a play with his arm downfield.

      But completely agree with the rest of your list. I think he just puts a lot of pressure on himself to play perfect so when he makes a bad, costly play he really takes a hit emotionally. I agree he need to work on that.

  7. Grant

    Wow! Man, are you gonna’ catch it from the Kaepaholics!…Thank you for an actual analysis. I wish I could say that I saw it coming, but I’ve been doing enough of my own preaching. You hit this one right on the screws. Again, Thanks…

    1. Grant, maybe you should also include his completion percentage when Crabtree returned? I would like to see the other top QBs around the league throw to marlon Moore, Kyle Williams, John Baldwin, a rookie TE that is a project, boldin, garret celek… Oh and an off and injured Vernon this year! I’m going to take a wild guess that his numbers drastically improved with another quality reciever… Imagine if he had a guy who teams are afraid that can take them deep other then Davis who is a TE! Just saying……

      1. 54.2 completion percentage in the playoffs with Boldin, Crabtree and Davis. The Panthers’ D was bottom-five in the NFL in completion percentage allowed.

        1. Ya there defense sucked right grant? Just like like Kuekly is slow and a bad pick! There front 7 is garbage as well !!! Lol

          1. The Panthers’ D gave up a 65.7 completion percentage last season, but Kaepernick completed just 53.6 percent of his passes against Carolina in the playoffs.

          2. Grant, you can have a bad secondary when your front 7 is as good as there’s! What’s it matter if you got great corners with a terrible front 7! Those corners get roasted! But if you have a great to dominate front 7 like the panthers clearly have, don’t you think the QB is going to struggle?

          1. Kaepernick plays defense? I forgot. That game turned when the 49ers’ defense made the second goal-line stand. The Panthers pretty much rolled over after that.

          2. David fales would dominate the panthers and the Seahawks! Lol.. Can’t wait until the draft where grant does his wonderful predictions….who needs comedy movies when you can read this stuff!

          3. Didn’t say he played D. Team game and all 3 parts have to be clicking. Still had to score some. A NFL team rolled over in the playoffs. See how a writer can use words to make it like he wants. Give me a break.

            1. The 49ers’ defense won that game. Kaepernick was lucky Quintin Mikell dropped a pick-six in the second quarter. But Kaepernick’s luck ran out the next week in Seattle.

          4. “CK≠ELITE”


            Grant though I agree the defense played a monemental role in that game you can’t deny Kap’s 2 TD drives in the 2nd half put that game on ice. It was a team win.

            1. You’re right. My point is Kaepernick didn’t start playing well until the 49ers’ defense made goal-line stand No.2 and took the wind out of the Panthers’ sails.

        2. What were his overall td and int ratio when Crabtree returned! His QBR which is what Espn gauges all the important stats that a QB does he was 3rd overall!!! Maybe completion percentage is a little overrated…

          1. The only people that can calculate the QBR stat live in Bristol.

            Until they can show the formula that is used to calculate it, the QBR doesn’t hold a lot of water.

          2. QBR is not perfect but more reflective of actual QB performance than QB rating which puts huge emphasis on TD/Int without taking much else into account in terms of game situations. Neither rating should be taken as a reflection of a QB’s overall play though.

          3. QBR is not perfect but more reflective of actual QB performance than QB rating which puts huge emphasis on TD/Int without taking much else into account in terms of game situations.

            That depends on what kind of QB it is.

    2. Oregon,
      I know you agree with Grant’ take.
      But my only thing is, what is Grant saying here that hasn’t already been said by everyone including the Kaepaholics?

      No new revelations…

    3. Oregoniner—Again you show your ability to reason. News flash. You don’t hit a screw, you hit a nail. Hitting a screw destroys it’s ability to serve it’s function. Simple little detail, but then most of you Kaep haters ignore the simple little details and only focus on generalities that don’t differentiate between nails and screws.

      1. Willtalk

        Close-mindedness changes nothing…”hitting it on the screws” is an expression from golf describing a perfect drive…and contrary to your belief, they don’t put nails in golf clubs. That’s funny….

        1. Close mindedness! Who is close minded. You have already made up your mind about Kaep. I would say that the jury is out and that last season because of a variety of issues was not a real indicator of his progress and what he can do or not do. As to the screws vs nails it was just some poetic license to make a point about leaving out details and using generalities to rationalize by the Kaep hater. Also the context and term used by you in reference to screw is a golf insider expression. Use that on a golf forum with other golf elitists.

  8. 1. Try doing some research. Ask Montana what he really said instead of taking a writers word smithing it.
    2. Quit trying to force Kap to talk to you and pops by bashing him. Not working is it.
    3. Kap finished tied for fourth in game winning drives with 4 games. Leader was at 5.
    4. Kap finished 7th in leading comebacks for team at 3 games. Leader was at 5 games.
    5. Ask Manning and Bree’s how being strictly pocket passers worked out against Seattle. Only chance we have is Kap against NFC West.

    Point is you can write whatever you want to make a point. Yours is getting old. Good thing our local writers are 49er fans.

    1. 1. Montana really said that. He was on the record. He has said similar things on camera.
      2. CK doesn’t seem to have much to say to anybody.
      3 & 4. CK’s fourth-quarter passer rating was 61.1, 16th-best in the NFC, only better than Josh Freeman, Eli Manning, Kirk Cousins and Christian Ponder.
      5. The ability to scramble always is great, but QBs ultimately win Super Bowls from the pocket. That was Montana’s point. No getting around that.

      1. You don’t have a clue that Montana said exactly that. You are only taking another reporters writing on that. Ask Joe what he really said. Call him.
        Kap says little and he already told you why.
        Now we are breaking it down by conference and quarters? Wow, Kap will never win with you, until he gives you long politically answers that say nothing. Maybe you need to ask yourself why he doesn’t.
        Kid has one full season in NFL and you have been critical all year. Take your personal bias’s out of it. Lots more things than passing completion percentage. Report it all.

        1. That’s exactly what Montana said.
          Good for Kaepernick.
          This is about Kaepernick’s skills at playing the toughest position in pro sports, not about his press conferences. Cam Newton does not represent himself or his team well when he babbles on and on.
          Kaepernick is not a kid. He’ll be 27 in November. People have been heroes in war at younger ages.

          1. His career is coming to an end soon he will be 27 in November! Got to find a replacement he is aging! Lol.. How old was young when he won a SB grant?

          2. What has that got to do with anything? Never said anything about war or Kap being a kid. As a matte of fact I am insulted that you would compare a game (work) to those who put their lives on the line for this country. Word smithing again to make a point. I am well aware of Kaepernicks age.
            Once again, verify with Montana what he meant.

            1. You wrote, “Kid has one full season under his belt,” so you did say CK was a kid. That was incorrect, and I used an example to show you why.

              Montana made his statement extremely clear. No interpretation needed.

          3. Thanks grant. So young joined the niners when he was 28.. A year and a half older then kaep is right now. So what your telling me is that young was not a developed passer in the pocket probably until he was 30? How old was Garcia when he was discovered by Walsh?

            1. The point is Young started improving immediately when he landed with Walsh. Kaepernick has not improved during three years under Harbaugh. That reflects poorly on both Harbaugh and Kaepernick.

            1. My pleasure. I haven’t given up on Kaepernick. He still has all of the talent any QB could want. I thought he would take a step forward last season. Maybe he’ll take a step forward next season.

          4. Grant:

            I think it’s stretching things to say that Kaepernick hasn’t improved in three years under Harbaugh. You may be able to say he didn’t take the step forward from 2012 to 2013 that you expected, but what is your basis for saying that he isn’t better than he was when he arrived in 2011?

          5. Your analysis was spot on. Mechanics, balance, footwork are key to almost any professional athlete and their respective profession. I am positive that his weightlifting and added lbs on his upper body restricted the fluidity of his throwing motion and ability to throw accurately as well. Kaep should know this as a former pitcher…..Hopefully we see some improvements next year!

          6. In respect to Youngs improvement vs Kaeps. What allowed Young to improve was the change of teams. With his stint with the LA team in the other league he had a horrible team and he was pretty much forced to play a one man game. TB wasn;t much better. SF had good receivers and excellent pass protection. From my perspective Kaep didn’t improve much during his second season playing, however I feel the circumstances he was in might have played a significant role in that respect. If you watch his play in his first few games of last season he was doing a lot of the things that people now claim he cant do. I would ask why? If he could do them then why not now. That is the main reason I don’t give that much credence to last season as a true evaluation of Kaeps evolvement as a QB. Some of it was Crab’s injury, but I put a lot on the front office and coaching staff. Why did he play so few snaps in preseason? They thought he didn’t need to and was ready. Or they didn’t want to risk getting him injured. Either way it was on the Staff. Why wasn’t there a “trusted agent” as a back up. My take is that Kaep is a conveniant scape goat for the a lot of the problems that should be on the heads of the front office and coaching staff. Example- How long did they allow the QB’s ( both Alex and Kaep) to take the rap for bad clock management issues when the problem was always the delay in getting the plays to the QB. I suspect there are a lot of other issues that are being attributed to Kaep that are actually on the coaching staff. There are a lot of things Harbaugh and company do well but then there are things they do that are unbelievably stupid. I think in their first season we saw their best. I also think that in their third all their warts were exposed and we saw their worst.

          7. LMAO!! Grant has not given up on Kaepernick yet…..

            That is the greatest statement of all time.

            In other news a homeless man in Russia has not given up on Putin.

          8. Grant,

            Overall, I agree with your assessment of Kaepernick’s strengths and weaknesses. I will say that I do not put as much stock in Montana’s opinion as many seem to — he never had to make the same transition. He always had to rely on his wits, always had to work on his craft, because he could not fall back on being the most gifted athlete on the field. What Kap needs to do is more difficult than simply stating what the end result should be, which is all Montana has really said (Young has much better perspective on what Kaep needs to do, and is equally critical). However, I do share Grant’s concern that Kap confronts criticism instead of processing it. That is not a trait he displayed at Nevada (nor would Coach Ault have let him display it), but it appears to be the norm now.

            But, I do not really want to delve to deep in to what legendary players, who have shown little to no aptitude toward coaching, think about Kap or in to how he reacts to them. I want to weigh in regarding whether Kap has improved under Harbaugh. I will say this — in the second half of the 2013 season, about 70% of the time watching Kap with the 49ers was just like watching him play for Nevada. The remainder of the time, he looks more like an NFL QB. He has improved his throwing motion, his footwork, and his field vision, as well as his touch passes, but those improvements do not show up on every play. As was stated elsewhere on this thread, he still relies on his instinctual play frequently, but I can see how he has changed to adapt to the pro game, at least some of the time.

            What is more an issue to me than a perceived lack of improvement over three years is the lack of improvement from 2012 to 2013. In all the years I have watched Kap play football, he has always shown noticeable improvement year-over-year, save for last year. Sure, there were some minor improvements, but they were offset by other issues (which some have termed regressions) that resulted in de minimis improvement, at best, from 2012 to 2013.

            Other than watching him play over the years, I have no expertise on evaluating Kaepernick, but none the less I will tell you all what I think (this is a blog comment section, after all). Kap took over in 2012 and played better than I expected he would – most of the time in 2012, he looked like a different QB than he did at Nevada (save for the GB playoff game — he could have been in Nevada Blue and Silver for that one).

            Then 2013 came, and except for the first game, in the first half of the season he looked neither like an NFL franchise QB nor like his Nevada self. He looked out of his element, and everything about his game suffered. As I said then, and I maintain now, I believe that he lost both of his security blankets in that first half — Crabtree and the threat of his feet, and he played poorly.

            In the second half of 2013 (except the first two games of it) he looked better, but he was more like he was at Nevada rather than like he was in 2012, and that continued until the end of the season. In that sense, it was a regression, not so much in skillset, but in style of play. He, and the 49ers coaching staff, I would argue, fell back on what they knew worked — letting him use his athletic gifts to make a difference. However, it appears that so doing worked to the detriment of his development as an overall QB.

            Now, as I have mentioned before, I do not subscribe uncritically to the narrative that he works on physical prowess to the exclusion of the strategic and mechanical nuances of playing QB. His coaches and many media sources confirm that he works in these areas. However, I was swayed by Steve Young’s post-NFCCG interview, and I now believe that Kap may need to learn to look at that study differently, to change his focus from how use his gifts to beat another team to how to use the gifts of his teammates to beat another team.

            I am hopeful still that 2014 will mark the year he transitions to looking like an NFL QB 70% of the time. Cam Newton did so this year, to my surprise I must admit, after a trying 2012. Newton showed real growth, both on and off the field, and most significantly, displayed a better understanding of the strategic element of his position. I believe Kap is capable of making the same improvement in 2014.

            That being said, I am concerned that Kap and the 49ers might not feel the same pressure to improve that Cam Newton did. After all, Newton and the Panthers improved from a losing season to a strong playoff team in 2103, whereas the 49ers are coming off a season of being considered, by many, the second best team in the NFL. The impetus for major improvement, which clearly Cam Newton had coming in to 2013, may not be as compelling for a team and a QB that feel they are almost where they need to be.

            1. Thanks for the comment. You should attend a 49ers game and watch Kaepernick warm up. No other QB I’ve ever seen warms up like Kaepernick. First, he stretches and runs like a sprinter. This takes about a half hour. Then, he warms up his arm like a picther — no lower body movement at first, then long toss. Then rockets. He never throws touch passes in warmups. He never works on his footwork during warmups. As far as I’ve noticed, every other QB practices those things before games.

          9. I seem to have made a considerable leap forward in time in my last paragraph above. Of course, the Panthers were a playoff team in 2013, not 2103. However, I do have good information that the Cowboys may be in contention for the Super Bowl in 2103. ;)

          10. JPN,

            While I do agree with most of what you said above, I disagree with your characterization of how Kap played in the second half of the season. I saw more of what we saw in 2012 than his time at Nevada. He threw the ball well the second half of the season and didn’t rely on his legs so often. He looked far more relaxed and potent down the stretch and into the playoffs imo.

          11. Grant,

            You mentioned Kap’s warm up routine before, and it jogged my memory of what he did at Nevada, but I did not comment at that time. My memory is that he did the same basic routine before Nevada games. My assumption then was he was putting on a show for the fans. But in light of your thoughts here, and Steve Young’s in his interview, I am more inclined to believe that Kap truly sees his routine as a warm up, not practice. I think your pitcher analogy is dead-on. Pitchers throw to loosen up their arms, not to practice pitches. Kap is warming up his “weapons” – his arm and his legs – not practicing his throws.

            And while we cannot confidently infer from this single category of “practice” that Kap does not work on mechanics, touch throws, footwork, etc. in other categories of practice (such an inference would be a cross-categorical inference), we can reasonably infer that he does not consider mechanics, footwork, touch passes, etc. to be necessary for his pre-game warm up. Further, given that this is not the normal observed practice of NFL QBs, we can predict that we might see the same or similar differences in other categories of practice. But such a hypothesis would need testing (through observation of a preponderance of the categories within the set) before we could confidently infer a trend that extends across the categories of the set.

            1. I’ve watched Kaepernick practice every day during the past three training camps and I’ve never seen him work on footwork. Not one time. That reflects poorly Kaepernick and Harbaugh. Harbaugh should have footwork drills for his QBs to do every day.

          12. “…I’ve never seen him work on footwork. Not one time. That reflects poorly Kaepernick and Harbaugh. Harbaugh should have footwork drills for his QBs to do every day.”

            That struck me as odd, as I remember something a writer wrote during a training camp on Harbaugh demonstrating correct footwork and correct Kaepernick’s footwork. I went and found that article. Here is the pertinent quote:

            “Harbaugh repeatedly showed Kaepernick what to do, commented on his footwork, demonstrated the correct footwork.”

            Here is the link — you are quite familiar with the author:


            1. As I recall, the drill was taking snaps from under center and dropping back, not re-setting feet in the pocket after the first-read is covered.

          13. I’ve never seen him work on footwork. Not one time

            As I recall, the drill was taking snaps from under center and dropping back, not re-setting feet in the pocket after the first-read is covered.

            You’re being disingenuous again Grant. Moving the goal posts and backtracking. Why can’t you just admit you say things off the top of your head at times that don’t turn out to be accurate?

            1. I wrote: “Other than slightly speeding up his throwing release and learning how to take snaps and drop back from under-center, Kaepernick has not improved any of his weaknesses.”

              I wrote about Kaepernick learning how to drop back from center in 2011. That is remedial.

              I wrote that Kaepernick’s second-biggest weakness is setting and re-setting his feet in the pocket. I have never once seen him work on that during training camp or before a game. Feel free to ask any other writer if he or she ever has seen Kaepernick practice that stuff.

          14. Ok Grant I’ll take your word on it.

            So you are saying Kap never practices footwork in the pocket? Harbaugh is never standing behind him critiquing his footwork as he drops back and scans the field?

            1. Yes, I’ve never seen that. I blame Harbaugh more than Kaepernick, although Kaepernick could hire a private tutor in the offseasons.

          15. Thanks for the clarification, Grant.

            Rocket, I do think Grant’s post at 3:21pm was stated too broadly, but I do not believe he was being disingenuous. Stating claims broadly is what opinion journalists do. What I like about Grant is that when he sates his claims over broadly, he will provide further nuance over the course of the discussion. Sure, sometimes he clings to his views longer than we might think he should, such as his Cowboys prediction (and he has taken his “punishment” for that quite well, in my opinion), but I do not believe he does so out of dishonesty (as our friend “E” claimed) or an intent to be disingenuous as to his actual position.

            Here, his is clarification makes sense within the framework he established above. I do not fully agree with either his premise or the extent of his support, but that is not a problem for me. I would be awfully bored if everyone agreed with me, although they would be quite correct to do so. ;)

        2. I jumped on what I thought he was saying and missed the context.

          My sincere apologies Grant.

          I’m also perplexed by the fact Harbaugh doesn’t work with Kap on his footwork. That should be mandatory given Kaps history. Maybe he needs to go back and work with the guy who trained him before the draft.

          1. JPN001— In your earlier post you stated agreement with Grants take on Kaep confronting criticism instead of processing it. This leads me to ask the question why. Is he the type of individual who deflects criticism to avoid blame or responsibility? No because he to often takes the responsibility for a loss in games when although he didn’t make enough or key plays the same could be said for many other players. He never throws his team mates under the bus. It seems to me that his responses to criticism are a reaction out of frustration of being criticized for things that are not really in his power to control. I think he takes too much responsibility and covers for others. It might make more sense that in those instances when he responds to criticism he is taking the heat for things dictated and controlled by the coaching staff and not him. The few times his responses have sounded like that might be a real possibility. His lack of detailed responses reek to me of some one who is attempting to uncomfortably hide something keep from throwing some one under the bus. As I have posted before I think there are a lot of things going on in the background that still have not yet surfaced. Don’t get the impression that I am trying to slam Harbaugh. I think he is still dealing with learning the difference between running a college team and the issues he has to deal with as a coach in the NFL. I suspect the problems are centered around the inexperience of both TB and Harbaugh.

          2. Thanks, Rocket. It doesn’t surprise me that Harbaugh doesn’t work on footwork (re-setting feet in the pocket) with his QBs. It’s not like Harbaugh was known for his footwork when he was a QB. He was a tough guy.

            That said, Harbaugh always wants to become a better coach and I’d imagine he knows he has to improve Kaepernick’s footwork. I’ll monitor that very closely during training camp.

      2. If you were old enough or had the insight to understand the issues Joe had during the process of the transition from Joe to Steve you might realize that his comments about Kaep are just a continuation of that. Joe has always had his own agenda and bias when it comes to runners vs pocket passers.

      3. He has been the starter for a 1 yr 1/2 with one full off season as the starter! You know what the most important stat is 22-8-1, which is his record so far…sure he isn’t Tom Brady right now, but I could think of 25 other teams that would love to have him as there starting QB.

        I think this years draft will be extremely important for the future of the 49ers and Colin.

  9. All good points. One thing to remember is that his inaccuracy is covered up by his receivers making great catches. The offense would be much more effective if he could throw with touch and hit targets IN STRIDE. They often have to stop and catch it, breaking momentum and chances at YAC.

    1. Jon in So Cal- What some of you are not considering is the difference between the team last season and the year before. The year before kaep did hit multiple receivers and in stride. The passes he throws to Boldin are the types of passes you throw to a a slower receiver who does not get a lot of seperation but whose strength is out jumping and fighting the defenders for the ball. Those are the type of catches that he makes and why he is still an effective receiver at his age. By if you watch NFL football you realize that a lot of QB’s have receivers who make great catches. They also have receivers who have drops of easy catches. It is however ridiculous lawyering to bring up this issue now because Boldin and some other receivers made some good catches this year as a rational that his stats inflate his accuracy.

          1. So, what was the reason for putting my Michael Sam comment into permanent moderation last week? It didn’t use any bad words and it wasn’t ad hominem.

            1. It was good satire but not G-rated. I’m erring on the side of caution right now. Maybe we’ll bump it up to PG next month.

          2. Hey Grant,
            i don’t recall ever being too nasty to anyone except to Bay, I figured if he can dish it out, he should be able to take it. Anyways, I’ve been keeping it pretty clean.

        1. Ok, let’s do,this again. With your previous points you have proved that this is a personal thing with Kaepernick. You have made it obvious with several comments. Sick of your baloney (how is that). Not feeding your stuff anymore tonight.
          Must be how Kap feels when he sees you in the crowd:(. Never good enough until he talks. Good luck with that.

          1. Gunslinger, I think you are taking this a little too personnel. I’m a big fan of kaep as everyone can see, but grant and many others on this blog have stated some accurate negatives involving kaep.. but I do agree with you that it seems that grant at times has a personnel problem with kaep as an individual. His writing at times comes off that way… One thing that I approciate about grant is that he pays attention to what people write and more often then not gives his opinion on the subject. That’s cool that he takes the time out of his day to engage with us..

  10. re: Throw with touch. After viewing Marcus Lattimore’s highlights I was blown away by his natural pass catching. He would add a little discussed dimension to the 49ers offense. Imagine Marcus sneaking past those 9 man boxes after play action.

    But can Colin get him the ball. Last training camp was packed with glowing reports about Colin’s improved touch and short range passing. All from reputable sources. In games we never saw it.

    1. Lattimore, like Gore, will likely primarily be asked to stay in and protect Kaep. I hope you are right though, Kaep has gone to the other extreme from Alex and almost never checks down!

      1. Scooter— I hope you are wrong but it seem more likely you are right. I think that is the reason that LMJ didn’t see much time at RB. He wasn’t a good blocker. I think that this is just another example of something Kaep takes heat for not being able to do, when it probably is only that the coaches don’t want him to do it. Like Bodie Washington posted – Kaep being praised in camp for touch passes and then not throwing them in games. I responded to another poster on another site on this issue when Kaep missed a checkdown. I stated that that is a timing thing which requires a team to run and practice it more than once to be successful at it. It just doesn’t make too much sense that a Qb can not throw a simple checkdown. I remember Kaep threw some decent touch passes his first season as a starter.

  11. Grant I have a debate for you. If you take the 5 things that Colin does well, and stack it against the 5 things he doesn’t do well, do the pluses outweigh the negatives? That’s the million dollar question, isn’t it? Colin has all the raw talent, and he would much rather play with instincts then learn to play in the pocket. Do you think he’s that good to overcome his deficiencies?

    Will the Niners be able to keep up with Seattle, Green Bay, Carolina, and New Orleans?

    1. Fan, the only team the 49ers have to worry about keeping up with is Seattle. They have have demonstrated they’re better than Green Bay and Carolina, and the loss against New Orleans this past season was misleading.

      1. Claude

        That’s for NOW…remember, the Rams, Cards, and everyone else has free agency and the draft to improve too. And if it works out the way it usually does, we’ll all be going for the same 10 guys. What bothers me is that I haven’t seen any creativity in harvesting small college guys, CFLers and semi-pro players. Face it, a lot of these college kids don’t want to come to the niners to sit on a bench for 3 years.

    2. Fansince77, If we add a reciever that can take a top off a defense from the outside to go along with crab and boldin I will promise you if we stay healthy we win the SB! The niners offense especially against the Seahawks is easy for them to shut down. The reason being of the lack of speed that our WRs have.. Seatle takes away every tight end they face with cam chanceller at SS.. Which allows earl Thomas to do what he wants by taking chances… If the niners present the Seahawks with a caliber player like a Watkins or a cooks, the niners will roll the Seahawks.. Balke strikes big in this draft I can almost guareentee it… If there is ever a time to morgage some picks for a player that seperates is from the Seahawks like S. Watkins can, it’s now!!!!!

      1. CKelite—-Good post! People just don’t seem to fathom the effect a lack of a speed receiver had on the 49er offense this year. Especially against Seattle. They own Davis. It also impacts the defenses ability to play the run. The defense can just constrict the field of play.

        1. Willtalk, thanks! That’s the point I was trying to make regarding what kind of an impact a WR of that caliber can do for this specific team.

      2. CKelite

        You’re making promises and guarantees on stuff that you don’t KNOW, and can’t back up. There’s a lot of changing to be done by the coaching staff, and in the system. Just as I criticized Kap for not being a star yet, Our coach(s) hasn’t yet proved that he/they are stars. No Lombardi’s…

        1. Oregoniner— We sure are in agreement on that. That is part of my point. I suspect that Kaeps lack of development and production is tied to the inexperience of both Harbaugh and TB. They are also rookies in that respect. I think Harbaugh is a good coach in his own way but he has certain weakness’s that are not helped by having another Rookie as GM. This manifested itself in the musical chairs roster moves this season. Harbaugh never had to deal with waivers or cutting down to a 53 man roster in college. Everyone often thinks that if a person is good in one aspect of a job they are also good in every aspect. Harbaugh having to deal with the difficulty of the various aspects that were new to him might easily have distracted him from doing the things he did well in college such as developing his QB.

    3. They already did that, and that’s why Jim was able to pilfer him in the second round. Where do you suppose he’d have been drafted now if hindsight were 20/20? Try top 10…..

    4. Fan,

      If you could get beyond your un objectivity towards Kap, you’d see he’s already answered the question you posed above. He’s already beaten every one of those teams and done it playing the way you seem to think can’t be successful.

      1. Rocket,
        Fair enough. Everyone thinks I’m a Kaep Hater. So if you can look un-objectively at your love for Kaep. Why do you think he’s good enough now?
        He didn’t beat New Orleans, he lost to them last year. He couldn’t beat Seattle. The defense beat Carolina. He did just enough, like Alex Smith before him.
        The assumption is all these teams will get better and they have solid play from the QB position.
        Based on your response you believe Kaep is plenty good and if he had just thrown it a few more inches farther to Crabs, the Niners would have been in the SB.
        But he didn’t throw it far enough, and it ties back to all the struggles and weaknesses that Grant stated above.

      1. Lol that’s funny Claude! just wait until you see Watkins run his 40 this weekend.. He ran a 4.27 last year at Clemson as a sophomore.. He got interviewed and he stated that he is faster now.. This guy is by far the best reciever out of this draft.. A can’t miss player like a Calvin, Julio, AJ type.. The reciever class is very deep but there is NO one like him..

        1. You are absolutely right about Watkins CK=ELITE, which is why the 49ers have no chance of getting him. He’ll be long gone.

          1. Scooter, you are probably right but if there is ever a time to give multiple picks to move up inside the top 5 it’s now.. Call me crazy but if we take care of resigning boldin and Whitner comes back some how.. I would trade this years first, 1 second, a third(we will have 3) and a first next year, I would do it.. Keep in mind our first next year will most likely be in the 20s or better.. This guy is that good.. This guy is a bigger stronger more athletic faster version of harvin! Plus he is a better reciever. I know I will take a lot of grief for wanting to trade a lot but this is a piece that pumps fear to seatle in the worst way possible. Plus he will be under control for, 4 Years at a reasonable amount.. Compared to the 67 mil harvin cost.

          2. No way would I do that. Yes, he’s very good, but there are other very good WRs available this year and as good as he is he isn’t better than having four talented players. It also breaks my golden rule – never give up future 1st round picks unless it is for an elite QB prospect. WRs don’t touch the ball enough to warrant such draft capital.

            In saying that, if you take out the future 1st rounder, and they can get him for the price of a 1st, 2nd and 3rd this year (he’d have to drop out of the top 10 for that price to work you’d imagine), then I would be amenable to it. Aside from Watkins they’d still have a 2nd and probably two 3rds (depending on comp picks), so they’d still be in a position to draft some talented players in other positions of need. But that’s about as far as I would go. It is highly unlikely they would be able to move up into a position to draft him for those picks though.

        2. CKelite—-The 49ers can’t afford to trade up to get Watkins. They need all their draft picks so when the 53 man roster cut down comes they will have an excess of talent for other teams to glean off the many players they will have to put on waivers that they wont have roster spots for. Besides that Trent will surely come up with a sleeper whom all the other teams GM’s underrated who’s name he can then put in an envelope, hold up and brag about the steal he’s just pulled off.

    1. Better than Watkins? Not this year there isn’t.

      The pundits describing Watkins as the best WR prospect since Green and Jones aren’t using hyperbole – he is. He’s the first true top tier WR prospect since them. They don’t come around every year. He should be a top-5 pick.

    2. However, if you’ve been reading any of my posts about the receivers in this draft you will know I strongly agree the 49ers should not trade the farm for him, and that excellent WR prospects will be available at the end of round 1 and in round 2.

  12. Let’s face it, the markets been set. Kaep is going to get a contract for around $12/yr. the motivating factor in these QB contracts for mid level QB’s (yes, Kaep is in that second/third tier)’ is the lack of options and difficulty developing the position. Are Romo and Cutler worth what they got? Doubt it, but who is going to play QB if you don’t have those guys? If we’re lucky, he’ll get under $15/yr.

  13. My pre-combine CB rankings (I’m not including LaMarcus Joyner in this list as I’m only including guys that can play outside – Joyner will strictly be a slot CB/ S):

    1. Darqueze Dennard
    2. Kyle Fuller
    3. Justin Gilbert
    4. Jason Verrett
    5. Bashaud Breeland
    6. Pierre Desir
    7. Bradley Roby
    8. Loucheiz Purifoy
    9. EJ Gaines
    10. Rashaad Reynolds

    I’ve left Victor Hampton off the list due to character concerns. Marcus Roberson is getting consideration in some circles as a 1st/ 2nd rounder but I’m not seeing it. He gets beat a lot in coverage, isn’t overly physical, and only has average speed and agility. Stanley Jean-Baptiste also doesn’t make my top 10 – I’ve explained why in pretty good detail previously.

        1. *pre-combine*

          I’ll expect he’ll move up after he does some verification work in Indianapolis….It’s hard to put him above Verrett when you look at what he did to Ward, Goodley and Beckham Jr. If not for his size, I’d have him at two. I want to see Gilberts’ 40 time, because if he runs 4.5, I’ll drop him. His return ability is why I have him where he is right now….

        2. What’s more surprising Claude, is that Rotoworlds’ mock has Verrett falling out of the 1st Round and Breeland moving up into it…

      1. Watkins at 10 razor? I like Watkins for his versatility, and I think he could develop into a good depth guy, but I think that is too high for him. He should be a 4th to 6th rounder IMO.

        1. As I surf around appraisals, Fuller seems to be moving up on some boards. More reshuffling after some Combine numbers and interviews.
          I’m buying in to the rankings by Scooter and Razor at the top (don’t know some of the other guys), but I’m beginning to wonder what the real value is on some of these guys. Take Verrett, who I like; some are saying he’s a quick, feisty, slot-cover guy ‘with some utility on the outside’. Is that a 1st Rounder, even at #30? Could the Niners afford to pass on him if he is there at #30?

          1. I think Dennard is the only clear cut first round prospect. Fuller and Gilbert are borderline 1st/2nd round guys in my opinion. Verrett should be an early 2nd.

            Breeland, Desir, Roby and Purifoy all look like 2nd to early 3rd round guys to me, and Gaines and Reynolds looks like 3rd rounders.

            Due to need I expect guys will go earlier though.

      1. Weren’t you beating the drum pretty loud last season that we should draft Hayden? If so why would you make the comparison and then say you don’t trust him?

            1. That’s what happened and I’m not proud of it. I feel very strongly about my CB evaluations this year and can’t nobody change my mind.

          1. “I feel very strongly about my CB evaluations this year….”

            Is that why earlier you claimed the CB depth shallow in this years pool?

            1. I think both would be effective covering the slot, but neither is worth a first-round pick.

              One thing about tiny slot corners — what happens when they have to face someone like Dez Bryant or Dwayne Bowe in the slot? Not a good matchup. If I were an OC, I would want to put my best receiver in the slot, even if he’s a big receiver. That way, he threatens the entire field.

            1. That’s what makes for horse racing.

              It seems to me the gurus are trying to make cases for CBs like Fuller, Roby and Verrett. Last year, gurus had to make cases for Hayden. I wouldn’t want to draft a CB in the first round who needed a case made for him. Dennard and Gilbert made their cases on the field. They are obvious first-round picks.

          2. I would argue that Gilbert lacks technique and therefore is too highly valued as a legitimate shut down corner. Dennard is clearly top 15 unless he tests slow. The next tier should go in a bunch somewhere in the twenties. Then you have good depth in rounds 2-5, not to mention where Colvin will be stolen….

            1. Gilbert is a playmaker — 5 picks as a sophomore and 7 as a senior. Patrick Peterson never picked off more than 4 passes in a season at LSU.

              Plus, Gilbert returns kicks. The 49ers would be lucky to land him.

          3. That’s all fine and dandy, but when you lack proper technique, you will struggle in the NFL. Isn’t that the case you’re trying to make with Kaepernick? Btw, did you notice the powerhouses he went up against to provide those stats?

            1. I would have drafted Kaepernick. He needs better coaching. You don’t draft players based on how polished their technique is. That’s what coaching is for.

          4. Grant I agree with your comment that the quality in the CB pool is not very good this year. As I posted in response to Brotha, I actually think there is only one CB that is a clear-cut 1st rounder, and some guys will be over-drafted due to need. It is why I have been saying that at #30 it is far more likely there will be a WR available of better value than a CB.

            However, I have a question with regards to your suggestion that after Dennard and Gilbert you don’t like this class. Do you mean that after those guys you don’t think there are any first round calibre players, or do you mean you think the next ‘tier’ of CBs shouldn’t even be second/ third rounders? Getting a guy like Fuller in the early 2nd round would be good value in my mind. All comes down to where he, and the other CBs, are taken.

          5. Mayock says this is the deepest draft he’s seen in 10 years and the deepest positions are WR, OT and CB. Not that I’m touting Mayock as the God of the draft, but I feel the same way. Roby for example would have been a sure fire 1st rounder based on his Sophomore year, but because he had a slow start this past season some view him as a lower grade of player. The same things were being said about Eric Reid last season. Roby has what can’t be taught and a good Coaching staff could turn him into an elite player imo.

          6. Yeah, I have to disagree on Roby. He’s got great speed but it doesn’t make up for his poor reading of play. Getting toasted by Abbrederis could have happened to any CB on an off day, but its his other film that has me scratching my head. He can make some good plays due to his athletic skills, but he lets himself down in other areas. He loses his guy too often, and can be pretty easily fooled. Those are mental breakdowns and aren’t always an easy fix.

            However, with regards to Mayock’s point about depth – he is right, there is good depth. There just isn’t much in the way of top end quality at CB this year in my opinion.

          7. Razor, I’m certainly not trying to suggest Roby is a bad prospect, I just don’t think he warrants a first down grade. Too many mental lapses last season to make me comfortable. Great athletic talent though.

          8. The draft position of any player is in the eye of the beholder. I understand your position on Roby Scooter. I’ve just seen him play at an elite level and believe that is the key to where you draft him. Mental lapses and focus are correctable; lack of talent is not.

          9. Hmmm, I would say technique is correctable, but it is much harder to correct the way a person processes information and how they interpret what they see. Reading of the game can be improved, but it can take many years, and sometimes they just won’t get it.

            Based on physical skills Roby is a first round talent.

          10. Scooter,

            I would agree with that stance if it was happening all the time, but it isn’t. For the most part, even last season, he was one of the best CB’s in the country. He did have instances where he seemed to lose focus or make a mental error but I wouldn’t define him by that, and it is correctable because it’s not a lack of understanding what he has to do.

          11. Hmm, I’ll re-watch some film on him but what I saw was a guy that made plays when he could rely on his speed and closing ability, but got lost and out of position far too often.

          12. @Scooter

            When you’re re-watching that film, take note of the technique Roby uses when coming up to lay the opponent out. Textbook legality……

          13. Will do rocket. I have watched his film, but I’ll take another look.

            Ability to lay someone out is not one of the key criteria I look for in a CB razor. Handy to have? Sure. Important to have? No, so long as they can tackle. Coverage ability will always be the most important.

          14. I don’t think there is a better tackler at CB in this draft than Roby Scooter. He is not afraid to stick his head in and make a play.

          15. I think you were missing my point rocket. Being able to tackle is important, but so long as they can do it moderately well and show a willingness to do it then I’m fine with it. It is a yes/ no column for me. Anything better than good in the tackling or hitting column for a CB is handy, but not what I’m judging these guys on. Other factors are far more important.

          16. @Scooter, I’m concerned you’re discounting the attitude, and the proper technique to avoid the yellow laundry, while laying out your opponent with the possibility of a “Splash” play resulting in a turnover. That’s what Rocket and I are talking about.

        1. One thing about tiny slot corners — what happens when they have to face someone like Dez Bryant or Dwayne Bowe in the slot? Not a good matchup. If I were an OC, I would want to put my best receiver in the slot, even if he’s a big receiver. That way, he threatens the entire field.

          Not if that tiny CB is a physical menace.

      2. No way. Fuller is good. Watch him in coverage and he’s got all the tools – he’s got good size and is fast enough to stick with receivers, has excellent hip flip, good agility, good leaping ability, turns his head, and times his head turn/ play at the ball very well. Hayden was overrated, Fuller is not.

        The only concern I have with Fuller is his history of muscle injuries.

          1. He doesn’t look as fast as Harvin on film…..But yea, I like Fuller a lot. He’s got all the traits you look for in a shutdown corner, plus he comes from a good college cornerback farm….

          2. Haha, no, he doesn’t look as fast as Harvin. But he looks as fast as, say, Carlos Rogers. He may not put up a 4.44s 40 time like Rogers, but I’d be surprised if it wasn’t around 4.5s. He looks plenty fast enough on film to be a quality starting CB.

          3. They shouldn’t draft a player solely to beat one player, or one team. As I’ve said previously, if you draft a team with the sole intention of beating Seattle you end up with a team that wins 2 games a year. Exaggeration, yes of course, but you get my meaning.

          4. You have to defeat Seattle to advance, and you’d like the deciding game at your new digs. Roby has the tools to cover anyone, but he’s one of the few that can stay with or recover from Harvins’ suddenness….Then you have the likes of Austin as well so, no not for just one team.

          5. If you are after a slot CB may as well go for Verrett or Joyner. Great football instincts.

            If you want a CB that can play outside or slot, better off with Fuller. Great football instincts.

          6. Fuller or Roby is what it’s boiling down to. I’m leaning towards Roby, you’re leaning towards Fuller. Right now Mayock has Roby at 5 and Fuller at 3. After the combine, I expect Roby to settle in at 4 with Fuller either moving up to 2 or holding onto that number 3 slot…..

  14. Great list Grant. I agree with all of it. #1 and #2 go hand in hand in my opinion but it’s fine that you separated them. I would add in that he needs to improve clock management and pre-snap reads. He tends to play chaotically when his first read isn’t available. He needs to read faster from the pocket and have a better grasp of what the defense is doing to defend him.

    In my opinion he will never reach elite status if he doesn’t work on his craft non-stop in the offseason. Lifting weights and physical workouts are fine but that won’t improve him in the slightest as a QB. CK is the classic knockout artist who can land haymakers for KO’s but he needs to learn to box to reach his full potential. He needs to pull a page out of Rocky IV and take a training staff to a desolate location eating & breathing nothing but footwork and filmwork for the next 5 months. I’m sure Duke and Paulie would be happy to coordinate a location and the best staff in the world for him.

  15. Colin is a huge waste of time. He’ll never get the Niners a ring. Add to the fact that he behaves like a major a..hole and he’s just not a lot of fun to root for. Stats are for losers as someone said. Bottom line is the defense has kept the Niners near the top. Without them, the team would be worse than Green Bay. Three years from now with a new coach and a big-deal draft for yet another QB and the Niners will still be trying to get it right…

    1. Yeah, your right. Harbaugh is trash. CK is trash. The whole entire place is out of order. Those 3 straight NFCCG appearances and Superbowl appearance were a total anomoly. It’s too bad we’ve had to go thru 3 straight years of rebuilding. If only they would rehire Mike Singletary as head coach maybe we’d be good again.


    2. Why don’t you crawl back under your rock. This blog was so much better when you disappeared during the 8 game winning streak.

      We all get it. You don’t like Colin and want him gone. Get ready to be disappointed buddy. Colin is not going anywhere. He will be the 49er QB for the next 10 + years.

      You once predicted that Colin will be out of the league in a couple of years. What that tells me is that you desperately want him to fail for some personal reasons of your own. I have a pretty good guess as to what those reasons are, but I’ll let that lie between you and your conscience.

      However, I do suggest you pick another team to root for. There are still a large number of teams out there with Quarterbacks more to your liking. Although the way the NFL is trending the number of such teams will become smaller and smaller with each passing year..

  16. There are going to be quite a few broken hearts around here come draft day. I would bet the house that the 9ers will resign Boldin and because of that wo’nt draft a WR in either of the first 2 rounds. The absolute worst long term move this team could make is to package a large number of picks and move into the top 5 or 10 picks, teams that do that very often end up in salary cap hell. The only way to keep your cap under control is through the draft.

    1. Agree 1000%. Not sure you’re right about the WR thing but I think moving up too high would be a disaster. I don’t know if Jon Baldwin will ever contribute as he just doesn’t have the hands to play WR in the NFL. BUT I do like Patton alot. I think he could be a decent #2 or #3.

    2. Good observation. The new rookie cap makes year 1-4 players cap cheap. In the short term that makes trading the store for Watkins even less plausible. Those 2nd-3rd-4th rounders will make it possible to retain players like Kaepernick and Aldon.

      But there is a (minor) flip side term in the long term. The rookie cap gives incentive for teams with high draft choices to trade down, especially if they are saddled with veterans and dead cap costs.

    3. I agree Old Coach. Scooter and I formed the same conclusion last week. This draft is set up beautifully for the Niners to use their picks in the first 3 rounds; not trade them. There is going to be some really good talent available right into day 3. This could set the Niners up for a long time.

  17. of all the stats .. the “stat-junkies” use to grade
    a QB .. the most misleading stat is the
    “completion percentage” …

    For example .. {say} the QB throws a perfect ball ..
    99% of the time .. but the receiver drops half of those ..
    the stat (then) goes against the QB ..

    Grant .. just curious .. but
    what was Montana’s completion percentage during
    Jerry Rice’s rookie season ..
    (ya kno .. when Jerry seemed to be unable to even
    catch a cold ?)

    (now .. that … might be a telling stat )

    1. 64.6. Montana had a 64.5 completion percentage in 1980 when he was 24 years old. He was an absolute natural when it came to footwork and accuracy, a big reason he is the greatest QB of all time.

      1. Bill Walsh’s offense was predicated on short passes Grant. If you weren’t well over 60% in that system, then you weren’t going to play in this league.

        1. Correct! I used to tape all the 49er games back then and rewatch them. Most of Joe’ passes were short crossing patterns and check downs to the RB’s. They more often used those check downs in lou of hand offs so they weren’t really check downs. When he was younger he also was more of a scrambler. After his injury he would stay in the pocket more.

  18. Top 5 things Grant doesn’t do well:

    1. Writing with any amount of objectivity
    2. Admitting when he is wrong
    3. Coming across as anything more than a petulant child
    4. Looking at both sides of an argument
    5. Understanding that Colin Kaepernick is a new age QB. I grew up with Montana and I will always love him but the comparisons to him and other quarterbacks of that ilk are completely worthless. Kaepernick’s athleticism is what gave us a chance in the Championship game. One of the most “accurate” passers of all time, Peyton Manning, was made to look completely inept by the same defense 2 weeks later.

    1. That’s because he’s a “statologist” and places more value on the numbers than on the problems he presents for opposing defenses…..

      1. +1 Razor ..
        for the reason I mentioned (above) is
        why stats are misleading .. and why
        I don’t put much stock in them ..

        They don’t tell the whole story

    2. As great as running is, a QB eventually must make throws from the pocket to win the Super Bowl. That gets proven year after year.

      1. but, you forget … “pocket-passers” also
        LOSE Super Bowls, too !

        I mean … Peyton is a statue back there ..
        and he got creamed !

        Like I said …

        stats are misleading !

      2. That’s just it Grant, he has made throws from the pocket. You make it seem like he can’t do it at all. The best pocket passer in the league was destroyed in the SB. It’s about matchups, not whether a QB can throw from the pocket.

  19. Top thing Grant Cohn does not do well: COVER THE 49ers.

    Go back to school, Grant. Your arrogance is starting to rival your dad’s. Those deficiencies are more the fault of Harbaugh and Roman than any shortcoming on Kap’s part. Roman is NOT the OC to lead this team to a championship. He has choked with his play-calling during crunch time two years in a row. Harbaugh’s lack of poise and time management skills during the final minutes is paramount in our runner-up status. There are 31 losers every year and ONE WINNER. We’ve had 3 good seasons in a row but it’s up to Harbaugh to demonstrate that he knows how to win — something he couldn’t do as an NFL QB.

    1. Big Al,
      the answer is everyone has to get better. Kaep needs to get better. Baalke needs to get better at his job by bringing in the missing piece in regards to a vertical WR. Baalke and Harbaugh need to get better, both in the OL and running back position to get the running game to be more consistent. The play calling has got to get better especially in critical moments of the game.
      We are in a great spot. Someone mentioned our old QB the other day and referenced the fact that Kaep’s stats are the same as the last guy. As a die hard niner fan I can say this, the biggest difference is that the games are a whole lot more entertaining that’s for sure. For those that don’t like Kaep’s style, go find another team because he will be our signal caller for the foreseeable future. I’ll be fired up to watch this team play from section 109 every Sunday…..

      1. bayareafan- Good post! Thats exactly my point. Most anti Kaep posts seem to be putting all the blame of him for the failures of the team. The circumstances can have a huge influence on any players development. Who is responsible for the majority of those circumstances? The coaching staff and front office. Everyone just assumes that because the team was successful during Harbaugh’s first year and since their was a QB change that the only variable was Kaep so he must be at fault. There was a huge difference in both team and circumstances between then and now. Harbaugh was smart enough to recognize that coming change and that is why he transitioned to Kaep. The 49ers still have a lot to work with but to take it to the next level all aspects of the organization need to get better. And as you stated that especially includes both Harbaugh and TB.

  20. Razor i find that the people who lean heavily on statistics are those who never played or coached. Others certainly use stats to evaluate a team\player\coach but they will lean more on the eye test and what their personal experiences have taught them. I posted earlier this year and i will repeat myself, maybe CK is going to be one of those QB’s who just win ugly. Terry Bradshaw is the perfect example. Look closely at Bradshaws first 3 years and you will see that CK is far ahead of where Bradshaw was.

    1. OC,
      great insite. As for your example with Bradshaw, I never thought Bradshawk was that great. He was barely good IMO. He had the baddest defense on the planet. Great offensive line, strong strong run support and Stallworth and Swan. So my answer to you would be of course Kaepernick is ahead of where Bradshaw was.
      Bradshaw’s running game and especially his steel curtain defense in the 70′s more times than not did not have him in situations where he had to come from behind.

    2. Hey, I resemble that remark!

      At least when I quote statistics, I try to be aware of the variables (like Crabtree being out much of the season, Manningham, Williams and a slew of new WRs turning into pumpkins).

      Its important to know what statistics to ignore. To me, the number of snaps a defense has to play if more important then time of possession.

      1. Brodie…. Razors original post was about people [mostly Grant] who he described as “statoligist’ people who blindly follow the religon of statistics, i certainly did’nt mean to include you into that group. Your posts always include prespective that comes from outside simple numbers.

    3. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with using stats, as long as they aren’t the crux of your argument. They have to support your view; not be the sole reason for it. Using stats to discredit somebody who has won 70% of his games doesn’t fulfill that requirement.

    4. I believe you are right about eye test. But I have a sneaking suspicion that stats/numbers/wins/losses have a way of coming to the forefront come contract time.

  21. I agree with most of your list Grant, but i also agree with many of the comments posted here. Kap is a new age QB, though it would be utter perfection to combine the athleticism and swag of Kap and the accuracy and pocket machanics of Peyton, its just not going to happen.

    Kap is not that kind of QB. I agree he needs to work on his pocket machanics and progressions and I believe he will, but that will likely never be a strength for him. The guy makes plays, has a cannon strapped to his shoulder, and gallops like a gazelle. He’s a rare talent and I believe Harbs will utilize his strengths and build this offense around his talents, while also giving him the support of a strong running game, solid protection, and a great defense. We can and will win a SB with that formula.

  22. Totally agree. I’m not a kap hater, in fact I wanted him to replace Smith , but I was wrong. ( something I rarely am and less frequently admit to) he’s a phenomenol talent but like many first rounders he wastes it. He doesn’t excercise the muscle between his ears. to say he would throw the same balls to the same covered receiver to lose the last game is sheer ignorance. So in 1989 Montana should have thrown to the greatest wr in history ( no Harbaugh, not Crabtree) instead of the open john Taylor? That’s why qb lose Super Bowls. On the other hand this year he can redeem himself. 2year as a full time starter, team with more probowlers than any other, and we will get more wrs. But will kap learn to be a real qb , not just the latest mike Vick? Vd was like that muscle and speed, but even Martz couldn’t get the ball to him as he couldn’t catch a cold. But he focused on catching and even worked out with the wrs. If kap concentrated on getting better at reading defenses, throwing accurately with touch, instead od how big his biceps are, he could maybe get to farve level, forget Steve young. I think eventually we will let him go and get more solid albeit probably less athletic qb to win a Super Bowl. No it’s not just kaps mental acumen, it’s that young and farve had walsh holmgren and marrucci, harbaughs staff couldn’t hold their athletic supporters. Sadly if kap doesn’t improve, it will not be good for the 49ers. That darn Wilson reminds me of joe Montana , just plain out knows football. Now I know how the dolphins felt after the 1984 Super Bowl.

    1. Disagree to the millionath power! All these comparisons to Montana and what Montana would do or wouldn’t do are shrouding people’s views.. First of all..Two different eras..two different offensive systems..two different philosophy head coaches..Golden age..innovation..Now..every body is running those concepts just about..49ers had the good fortune to capitalize on that in a pre salary cap era..and beginning stages of cap era..Those days are over with people..Beautiful era.beautiful time..BUT THEY’RE OVER WITH! Russell is not Montana..He’s Fran tarkenton..except.unlike him.he’s got a ring now..and didnt have to do much to get it..So as far as all this it factor right he does” it”..his defense was it..And knocking Kap for scrambling..when that’s what Russell does just as hypocritical..I seen game and game..him running around like a chicken with his head cut off..til his receivers come back for the ball..But Thats what being a great Qb is .and not athleticism? Gimme a break! Kap is in no win situation with u haters..if he only throws to open he’s gotta learn to make difficult throws to covered receivers..If he throws to covered receivers..why doesnt he throw to wide open receivers..He read the defense..thats why he took shot on one coverage..the play was alright..Just wrong type of receiver for that play..which is why need a bigger target to make that catch..or at worst bat it away..But to knock kap so you can build Russell up is crazy..and pining for our previous qb is crazier..

  23. Montana ruined it for everyone! Even that guy named Young looked rough around the edges and he had played for 5 years before starting here. While I wholeheartedly agree with article, there is still a learning curve. Results by Kap so far:
    Super Bowl one year,
    NFC championship game the next.

    This is the year he takes off.

    Relax folks!

      1. Horse manure. His chapters of greatness began at Notre Dame. I still remember a certain Cotton Bowl where down 34-12 in the 4th quarter, Joe led them to victory despite his body temperature dipping to 96 degrees plus fighting off hypothermia. He was forced to retire to the locker room where the ND medical staff warmed Montana by feeding him chicken bouillon, and by covering him with warm blankets. That game to me ranks as one of the most important in college football bowl history. There’s a reason he’s regarded by those who know football, as the greatest quarterback in NFL history….

        1. yeah he didnt win 4 super bowls. lead the team to win in the last quarter with a throw to taylor not rice. he really did have a int in a super bowl that no one ever did. He never brough a miserable 1981 team ( dont ask me ask eddie d) and win a super bowl. He didnt take a miserable kc team to win over the great steve young sb team that set records for scoring. No he isnt as good as Bill Walsh said or Madden . well jsut take your word for it. who are you again?

        2. I agree about his greatness at ND and most of his years with the 49er’s. He was the personification of a winner. I was a big 49er and Joe Montana fan. However he was in a system that optimized his skills and negated his weaknesses. I get tired of people claiming that Joe was ALWAYS clutch and never threw interceptions. Heck he threw three interceptions in the victory over Dallas( the catch game). They 49ers began to really win once they got their defense together. That was when they acquired Dean, Hacksaw and drafted their All star defensive backs.He had some pretty bad games himself. After his injury he actually was never really the same player and at that level would not have been able to do what he did in college. He was very mobile and athletic before that He could make plays when the protection broke down. It was after that he had to rely more on his protection, the system and what was between his head win games. All that said he was not as consistently good as some people remember him to be. Razoreater- I respect your football knowledge. It exceeds mine to at present by a wide margin. But I am going to pull some age on you here. By your picture I can assume that you are a great deal younger than me. Our perspectives as fans are very influenced by our experiences and the age that we are when those experiences happen. The younger we are the more apt we are to be more influenced by era that we are a part of at that time. We are less objective. Pehaps you are not one of those people who only remember the great games he played and forget the one’s that were far less than steller. But there are far too many people who have forgotten the reality and end up worshiping the myth.

      2. I agree with Razor. While I think fans tend to emphasize the legend and forget that he made mistakes (and had a couple horrible playoff games), that does not diminish the player he actually was. I have never seen a better QB, period.

        Now, for a bit a heresy — while I was always a fan of Montana the QB, I was never a fan of Montana the person. Something about him always rubbed me the wrong way, and still does. If I had a chance to go to lunch with Montana or Young, I would pick Young every time.

        1. Montana is my favorite QB of all time, but some fans have given him God like status and only remember the SB’s. He had a lot of bad games but nobody talks about that, preferring to wax poetic instead. Even Young was hated by many until he won the SB. Montana’s legend has made it impossible for other QB’s in this town to get a fair shake.

        2. while I didn’t think much of Montana as a person I think I can understand what formed him. He got a pretty raw deal at ND. The coaches had him playing behind QB’s who couldn’t carry his jock. Even when he came off the bench and led comebacks to win them games they still returned him to a back up role. This would put a real chip on the shoulder of someone with his type of personality. I believe this might have warped him into becoming defensive and near ruthless when it came to his starting position at QB. Anyone who was competition or threatened his position was seen and treated as an enemy with no holds barred. His actions towards Young went way way beyond not being friendly.

        1. Perhaps! But I followed football and the Niner’s much more extensively back then. I used to study the films and analize each play on it’s own merit. Try doing that sometime in any sport and you will find that your first perceptions of specific plays are often wrong. When we watch as fans we get too wrapped up in the moment. I have also never allowed myself to get caught up in any hype of the present. As I have told Razor there are many aspects of football that people have more knowledge in than I do. However when it comes to objective perspectives on popular opinion and their ability to influence our perceptions of history I trust myself. This transcends football and is applicable to almost any subject.

    1. Not to mention 3 playoff wins on the road his first two years. Winning a playoff game on the road is probably one of the hardest things to do in the NFL.

      Just for comparison here is the road playoff record for Montana and Young.

      Montana: 2-5 (1-3 with the 49ers, 1-2 with the Chiefs)
      Young: 0-3.

      Before someone starts mentioning the 5 super bowl wins between Montana and Young please note that Super Bowl is a neutral site and does not count as a road win.

      1. Mark Sanchez won four road playoffs games before he turned 25 years old. Turns out that indicated nothing about Sanchez, just like it indicates nothing about Kaepernick.

        1. That comparison is so idiotic.. honestly you are comparing mark Sanchez with kaep.. This is when you lose any creditability that you have when you write things like this. Hammer, 25 qbs can play as well as kaep did in seatle ? There is not 1 qb that can play as well as kaep did! Not Peyton, not Bree’s…

          1. Winning road playoff games on the back of a great defense means almost nothing. Mark Sanchez proved that. It’s all about winning the Super Bowl, not road playoff games.

          2. “25 qbs can play as well as kaep did in seatle?”

            Let’s compare two games in Seattle this season:

            Kaepernick’s passing stats, 14-24 153 yards, 1TD 2Int

            Mike Glennon’s passing stats, 17-23 168 yards, 2TD 0Int

          3. Keep up with the conversation. Kaepernick is a good runner, that wasn’t the question. My question was how many QB’s could match his passing numbers.

            Glennon as a rookie with no Doug Martin, and Mike Williams for only 3 starts put up similar numbers to Kaepernick and had a better day passing against Seattle.

          4. Hammer, are the niners considered a rushing team or a passing team? Plus you want to start to throw stats around but yet you leave out 130 yards rushing in one game.. He had more total yards that game hammer? Who was responsible for 92 percent of the offense in that game? Who beat seatle once this year? It’s all about winning right? You are so good at stats why don’t you pull up kaeps career numbers and his winning percentage….

          5. 31 tds passing 11 picks. 9 rushing tds.. A total QB rating of 93.8.. Played with scrubs at wr until crab returned this year.. That’s a year and a half in the league! You guys are right, he sucks!

          6. Again, the question was about his passing ability not his running ability. Try to distinguish between the two if you can.

            The only QB to beat Seattle in Seattle this season was Carson Palmer.

            Kaepernick has won a lot of games, but he’s not the only reason for those wins. He took over a team that had won 20 of it’s previous 26 games without him.

          7. Hammer, the niners are not a PASSING team! They rely on the running game.. How many times does kaep drop back to pass on average? This conversation is about passing numbers but that’s irrelevant when you consider that the niners are built to run..

          8. I didn’t say they were a passing team. They are a balance team.

            Glennon as a rookie put up very similar passing numbers to Kaepernick. They both threw the same number of passes. The only real difference was in the yards per pass.

          9. This conversation is about passing numbers but that’s irrelevant when you consider that the niners are built to run..

            The Niners are supposedly built to be a balanced team so the conversation is relevant.

          10. Glennon’s passing numbers were comparable to Kaps in Seattle, but unlike Kap he had a running game to help him out. He got 158 yards from James in that game. Big difference in the passing game when you get that kind of run support. Just makes the Niner Oline look bad in comparison.

        2. Jack also left out the two mind-numbing picks and the fumble caused by Kaep not sensing the pressure coming at him, so you should be grateful Ck-Elite.

        3. Totally irrelevant. There was not a single game in that stretch in which Mark Sanchez carried his team to victory in the playoffs. Kaepernick carried the 49ers and played brilliantly in both playoff games last year. He outplayed Aaron Rogers, considered by many to be the best QB in football. He played an incredible game against the Falcons, who had torched the 49ers D early in that game btw, and brought the team back from a 17 point deficit. There have been numerous times in which the 49ers have needed Kaepernick, not the defense, to carry the team and he has done that more often than not. Give the Seahawks credit for being one of the great defenses of all time. Look what they did Manning. Losing to them on the road by a whisker is certainly nothing to be embarrassed by, and if you’re looking for accountability from Kaepernick look no further than his post-game comments. He owned his mistakes and admitted that they cost his team the game so I don’t know why you keep beating the drums about his lack of accountability for errors or weaknesses.

          And this nonsense about Young always improving as a pocket passer? What? You make statements that have no basis in reality, and for which you have no tangible proof. None whatsoever, and certainly not any personal experience. Were you even old enough to watch football in 1988? Do you have any personal memory of the way that Young was “progressing” as a pocket passer that year? No. Of course you don’t because if you did you wouldn’t make such a ridiculous statement Grant. Young actually had a chance to take the starting job away from Montana that year. Harris Barton has gone on record saying that Bill Walsh was exaggerating the extent of some very minor injuries that Joe had that year because he was becoming disillusioned with Joe’s play. He gave Young a chance to take the starting job and Young REGRESSED, and lost to the Arizona Cardinals in a game in which the 49ers were up by 3 touchdowns in the first half. But of course you don’t remember that. How could you?

          If you have some weird bone to pick with a young QB with a year and a half of starts under his belt and 4 playoff victories to his credit, fine. But every time you try to justify it you only make it more obvious that you are a troll with very little experience yourself, not only as a “journalist” (if you could even call what you do on this blog journalism), but even as a fan. Your handle, even on the trajectory of Steve Young’s career which is pretty well documented is worse than sketchy. One thing I know for sure is that if you had been writing articles like this from 1988 through 1993 when Steve failed to take the job from Joe even though Bill Walsh gave him the opportunity, and then went on to miss the playoffs in his first year as a starter and lose two consecutive NFC title games to the Cowboys you would have been ripping Steve too, until he entered the HOF of course, at which time you would have said you always knew he was a great QB! Ha! What a joke.

    2. This is the problem — Kaep is on a stacked team. SB one year, had a chance to make the play to win the game and he blew it.

      NFC Championship — Had a chance in the red zone to win the game and blew it again by making the same mistake.

      The defense is getting older and the window starts to close…..

      1. Jack Hammer– You state that Kaep took over a team that had won 20 of 26 previous games with out him. You are an example of the type of simplistic thinking that I mentioned earlier. You imply that it was exactly the same team when it was not. There was a huge difference between the team Smith took to the playoff and the team Kaep end up in the playoffs with. I and others have posted the too numerable differences to mention in one post already in other posts. So either you cant read or you cant comprehend and process more than one concept or variable at a time. Teams change from season to season for a variety of reasons and even mid-season which is what happened Kaeps first starting year. Just take away Ailkers record setting year and see how many victorys they would have had out of those 26 games played. Then subtract the record setting takeaway to turnover margin and see how many victorys disappear. This does not even touch on the difference between the injuries the Niner’s play during Kaeps time at Qb. while the Niner’s under Smith were relatively injury free till Ginn went out. And we know how much that affected the Giants game. Fansince77-Kaep is on a good team but it is not as good as some of you might want to believe. It has serious issues for about a season and a half.

        1. “Just take away Akers record setting year and see how many victorys they would have had out of those 26 games played.”

          Yeah, and while we’re at it let’s take away Dawson from the 2013 team. He only finished the year with the second most points (140) and field goals (32-of-36) in the team’s history.

          “This does not even touch on the difference between the injuries the Niner’s play during Kaeps time at Qb.”

          Yeah you’re right. Having a receiving group consisting of Crabtree, Williams, and Joe Hastings after injuries took over is much better than the group of Crabtree, Boldin, and Patton that Kaepernick had during the playoffs.

        2. Willtak,
          Okay so how is the 2013 Niner team not as good? How many pro bowl players do that have? They lost games, all to play-off contending teams. The serious issues for a season and a half?
          How so? They got to the SB and NFCCG as you said. They had a chance to with both games and the QB had the ball in his hands and failed both times to make the play. Doesn’t matter how you play in the first 59 minutes if you can’t finish.
          Kaep had a strong defense, a reliable running game. a good fullback. A 6 million a year WR, a Pro Bowl TE. What more does he need?

  24. What is the over/under on the number of QB’s in the league that could match Kaepernick’s passing numbers in this offense. I would set it around 25.

        1. Does not change anything. Let’s form a team. I’ll let you have Glennon, and I’ll be burdened with Kaepernick. May the best man win….

          1. @Hammer “Really? Indianapolis and New Orleans didn’t seem to do too bad at making him look remedial either”.

            Good, that means the 12 teams that made Glennon a loser will provide me with a larger group of personnel with which to hand him his 13th loss. ;)

          2. “Glennon was much more NFL ready than Kaepernick coming out of college”

            Perhaps, but his supporting cast in Tampa is no where near Kaepernick’s in SF.

          3. @Hammer-Glennon was much more NFL ready than Kaepernick coming out of college.

            So was Brady Quinn and look how that has turned out for him.

          4. @Hammer-I suppose the point you’re trying to make with that statement, is that it’s Kaepernick who is at fault the Buccaneers did not draft properly, and it’s also Kaepernick who’s at fault that the 49ers have.(wr excluded)

          5. No. I am saying that a big part of Kaepernick’s success in the W/L column is the group that he is surrounded with. Alex Smith went 20-6 with almost the same group.

            Would Kaepernick have turned the Buccaneers into winners in 2012 and 2013? I don’t think so.

          6. Hammer-”Would Kaepernick have turned the Buccaneers into winners in 2012 and 2013″? “I don’t think so”.

            Disagree. I think Kaepernick would have provided the Bucs with a few more wins, especially when their stud hamster ended up staying with the vet…

          7. Saying that you would consider drafting a QB is a great way to create more value in the pick for a team that actually wants one.

            The Bucs are going to trade down.

          1. The niners won 8 in a row when crab returned.. Kaep after that had 12-2 tds to int ratio.. What’s was glennons? The bucs have a good defense as well..

          2. Yeah you’re so right CK ELITE, Boldin is a worthless scrub. If only he could “stretch the field” like the legendary Tiquan Underwood….

          3. LSX, why don’t you compare V jax with boldin or Crabtree? How many teams would rather have V jax at WR then those 2.. No one mentioned comparing boldin with underwood. Pay attention clown!

          4. Anquan Boldin and Michael Crabtree- 3 Super Bowl appearances and 1 Super Bowl win between the two.
            Vincent Jackson- 0 Super Bowl appearances and obviously no Super Bowl wins.

            NO COMPARISON.

        2. @Hammer

          “Glennon didn’t have the offensive personnel around him that Kaepernick does, and the Tampa defense has a lot of holes”. You’d better fix that when assembling your team….

          1. I’m already working on that. ; )

            In my mock draft for the Bucs I have them taking Davante Adams, 3 offensive linemen to build up their protection and Trey Millard who can be a dynamite FB if he can make it back from his knee injury.

          2. “Why not use some of their available cap space to sign C Alex Mack?”

            They already have Zuttah who is decent. I think they should spend in free agency on a starting DE such as Lamarr Houston and then work toward depth.

          3. The Bucs have Mike Williams to go with Vincent Jackson. He was injured for part of last season, but is a pretty good compliment when healthy.

          4. @Hammers’ Team Buc Draft Tit:


            Razoreaters’ Team 49er Draft Tat:

            Round 1 Pick 30: Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State (B+)
            Round 2 Pick 24: Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech (A-)
            Round 2 Pick 29: Dominique Easley, DT, Florida (A)
            Round 3 Pick 13: Donte Moncrief, WR, Ole Miss (C)
            Round 3 Pick 30: Marcus Martin, C, Southern California (A)
            Round 4 Pick 29: Jeremy Hill, RB, LSU (A)
            Round 5 Pick 30: A.J. McCarron, QB, Alabama (A)
            Round 6 Pick 29: Hakeem Smith, SS, Louisville (A)
            Round 7 Pick 26: De’Anthony Thomas, RB, Oregon (B)
            Round 7 Pick 27: Jacob Pedersen, TE, Wisconsin (B)
            Round 7 Pick 28: Tyler Starr, OLB, South Dakota (B-)
            Round 7 Pick 30: Chandler Catanzaro, K, Clemson (B-)

          5. Compete? It would take a grade of A+. I understand you do not respect Mayock as an evaluator, but he does have McCarron rated as the #5 quarterback, so to see him available in round 5….I couldn’t pass on him after you selected Fales. I figured we could let those two battle for supremacy in our pre-season game. ;)

          6. My comment is not based on anyone’s opinion other than my own. He was asked to compete at the Senior Bowl, declined. He was asked to compete at the combine, declined.

          7. Yea, I’m not narcissistic enough to think I know more than Mayock…Feel free. Of course McCarrons’ agent probably did not have any influence on his decisions.

          8. Having my own opinion makes me narcissistic?

            You may want to go back and check my comment. I never said anything about disagreeing with Mayock.

          9. @Hammer

            My apologies. Anyone else on that list you have a problem with? Do you disagree with signing Whitner and releasing Boldin?

          10. Only thing I’ll say is replacing Boldin with a raw prospect like Benjamin is pretty risky. Moncrief also is pretty raw, and needs some time to develop. Both are big upside guys.

          11. Don’t forget Benjamin has experience lining up in the slot too Scooter. I want him on the field. Moncrief can develop this year to help Benjamin fill the void when Mr. Crabs heads for deeper seas…

          12. I’m not forgetting. He’s very raw regardless of where you line him up. I hope for his sake he goes to a team that is patient with him. With good coaching he could be great, but he’s your classic boom or bust prospect.

          13. @Scooter

            Over here in America we have a saying, Go big or go home. I presume you Aussies have a similar saying…I’d be interested to hear it.

          14. I can see the logic in Whitner over Boldin Razor, but based on past history (Goldson), and how much they valued Boldin’s presence, I think it’ll be the other way around. I get the feeling they feel they can upgrade on Whitner, at least in coverage.

            I’d take McCarron in the 5th too. Good pick.

          15. Yeah, we have similar mindsets when it comes to rugby league or rugby union over here, but I always find it funny how often these big, burly guys with incredible speed come in and get walloped by smaller, less athletic guys that actually play football, not athletics. Give me the football player every time.

          16. @Scooter, actually that saying isn’t literal. It means to be extravagant, to go all the way, and do whatever needs to be done to win. You said they were boom or bust guys. I’m betting on the coaching staff to get them to doom the legion of boom….

    1. I don’t know Jack, but I do know there aren’t many who can throw down the field like he can. I also know he was 8th overall in yards per attempt, 7th in QBR and 10th in QB rating. This is also not taking into account that this offense relied on his running ability in a number of games, which not many QB’s can do either.

      So how about we change the question to the over/under on how many QB’s could do what Kap does in this offense?

      1. “how about we change the question to the over/under on how many QB’s could do what Kap does in this offense?”

        Feel free. What would you like to set it at?

          1. Jack,

            The question was ” QB’s that could do what Kap does in this offense.” I didn’t set an under/over, I gave an exact number instead.


            Foles and Rodgers couldn’t run remotely close to Kap on their best day. Foles especially can not run much at all. The rest I agree with although Smith can’t run like Kap either.

          2. Jack,

            The passing/running combination Kap brings to the table is what I’m referring too. This is Harbaugh’s offense which includes the QB running the ball at times, and in Kaps case, quite a few times. If Kap threw the ball more he’d put up higher passing numbers too. It just so happens the Niner offense throws the ball less than every team in the NFL.

          1. This list has the QBs that can run and throw. I am assuming that’s what you meant by QB’s that can do what Kaep does in this offense Jack. If not, then this list will be even larger.

          2. @Hammer Ha! Don’t bring me into this. It’s getting to the point of ad nauseam for me. Let’s agree to disagree on the 49ers quarterback. I backed Smith until Harbaugh made the switch. I’m riding shotgun with the man who holds the keys to the 49er engine. Colin Kaepernick….

    2. What is the over under on the number of QB’s in the league who can match Kap’s running numbers in this offense. I would set it around a big fat ZERO.

        1. Steve Young did not have big running numbers in his super bowl win because the game was a blow-out and Steve did not need to run. But, there is no denying his speed had an impact on every one of the 49er wins that year. The fact that he HAD speed meant that opponents had to account for him as a runner on every down. Exactly like Kap who will evolve as a pocket passer with an ever present threat of a run.

          BTW if Steve had not come up with his famous 49 yard TD run in the regular season game against the Vikings in 1988, the Niners don’t make the playoffs and the Montana to Taylor pass never happens. Here’s a link to that run for youngsters like Grant who were not yet born in 1988.

          1. All I am saying is that Kaepernick’s big running numbers won’t mean diddly (PG for Grant) if he doesn’t improve as a passer and a decision-maker. For a QB, passing and decision-making are more important, much more important, than running.

          2. We can agree on that one Claude.

            I believe you will see an improved Kap in that regard come September. Remember he was mainly a read option QB in 2012, but rarely used the read option in 2013. There is no reason to believe he will not grow further as a pocket passer in 2014.

            Give the man a chance. He ran an offense in college which is 180 degrees opposite to what is needed to win in the pros. The fact that he has made it to two NFC championships and one Superbowl in about 1-1/2 years as a starter is a major achievement in itself.

            Lombardi #6 is just around the corner. Keep the faith brother!

  25. We all know Kap is a hard worker and a dedicated player, but is he a good learner? Alex was a good learner (yes, a slow learner) AND a good teacher/mentor to his fellow QB’s. He understands the game.
    Grant is Kap a good mentor? What have you seen at practices?

  26. He also does not have good pocket awareness when defenders are rushing in from peripheral views… maybe linked to him honing in on one receiver target. He also does not have a good game clock once the ball is snapped and will hold the ball too long giving defenders a chance to close on receivers and with pass rushing

    1. I think a lot of you might want to revisit his results in his Sports science test. He was able to see and react to an open target at a very fast rate. Now if he has a peripheral vision problem that might affect his ability to see the entire field. Too many of his actual results seem to contradict the things that are always mentioned as thing he is not able to do. It’s like saying that Lions can’t swim because you don’t often see them in the water.

  27. I presume the coaching staff (Harbaugh, Roman, Chryst, Mangini, etc.) is well aware of Kaep’s shortcomings. The problem is they must convince him that a change is necessary or the betterment of the team. Unfortunately, this is not taking place. Is it he coaches’ fault or is it Kaep’s reluctance to make changes? Te latter can be headstrong such as his boorish behavior in a London interview when he refused to remove his headphones e ven against NFL rules. He has temendous natural ability but must work on Grant’s suggestions which, for the most part, are spot on. Aloha from Honolulu Paul.

  28. One more thing Kaepernick does not do well:

    Growing up: His celebration after TDs and attires he wears at the press conference are childish (while he is the face of the franchise with 5 SB trophies)

        1. There’s a rule against taunting. Maybe you should familiarize yourself with the rules instead of gracing us with your Razor sharp wit….

    1. Fans that get pushed out of shape by what an athlete wears and feel hurt that he wears another teams hat are the ones that are childish. What athletes or coaches wear has often changed back and forth in the history of the NFL. They have gone from no suites to suites to now back to no suites. Geez people study some history and don’t get locked into the idea that your own perspective era is the only correct and proper one.

  29. Chiefs looking to trade the 23rd pick overall in the first rnd to accumulate more picks in the middle rnds.. The idiotic theory of the niners not being able to trade up is getting dumber by the day..

  30. Grant,

    Rocket is going to let me have it tomorrow.

    Nah, I’m not an apologist for the guy. He does have things he needs to work on and I agree with most of what you posted here. My contention is simply that he is still a work in progress being that he’s very early in his career as a starter, and too much is being expected because he set the bar so high in 2012. He came back to earth a bit this past season, but he also had to deal with not having his best WR for the first 11 games, and no reliable 2nd TE option like he had with Walker, while also breaking in a new #1 WR.

    I’m not worried about his completion percentage. He doesn’t take the checkdowns very often which is the difference in being over 60% instead of under it. As soon as he realizes that it isn’t a bad option to dump it off once in awhile, the completion percentage will go up. He also improved measurably across the board when Crabs returned. He had as good a second half of the season as any QB in the league. The completion percentage wasn’t great in the playoffs, but he made a lot of plays both passing and running and won 2 of the 3 games. That is all that matters to me.

    My view of Kap is based on not only what I’ve seen, but also what should be realistically expected. He was a project coming out of College who blew up after getting a shot halfway through his second season. Predictably after having an offseason to gameplan against him, defenses played better against him, but once he had all his weapons back he was playing as well as he played the previous year. I look at the fact Kap is also going into only his second offseason as a starter and will be that much better next season because of it.

    The biggest pet peeve I have is people assuming things about him they have no clue about. I’m reading posts ripping him for working out instead of working on his footwork etc, yet nobody knows that for sure. He was working out on his own a week after the SB and said he would work to make himself faster; that doesn’t mean that is all he worked on. It’s nothing but assumptions made by people looking for a reason to criticize. Meanwhile he’s been the first one in and the last one out, works out on his own until he’s allowed to return for the offseason program and never gets into trouble. This is Alex Smith part 2. Some Niner fans just can’t help themselves and have to paint a target on whoever the QB is while comparing him to Hall of Famers from days gone by. If the team was 6-10 and Kap was throwing as many picks as TD’s, I’d be at the front of the b*tch fest line, but that isn’t the case here, in fact it’s the exact opposite. Try to appreciate what we have once in awhile instead of ranting endlessly about what you think needs to be better.

      1. Very true LSX, but even more ironic, at least imo, is the fact some of the people that used to rail against the Smith Haters, are now hating on Kap. As I said in the above post, the QB of this team gets a target on his back no matter who he is.

  31. Grant, I agree with your assessment of Kaepernick’s weaknesses in the original blog post. Would have been nice if you brought these points up when you were leading the cheers to move Alex Smith out of town…but that is water under the bridge now. Kaepernick is still a good and productive QB, but it’s when the leash is off and his aggressive running is integrated into the game plan. Even then there are problems because he is less than stellar in the red zone and hasn’t shown a killer instinct to finish in some of the Niners big losses. I don’t hold out a lot of hope that Kaepernick works his way into being a polished pocket passer. Let him play hard, and spend a draft pick in the top three rounds for a quality QB prospect that can replace him when he goes down with an injury. Seems like the best way to manage the situation. I would not offer him an elite franchise QB contract unless he improves and gets the team to the top of the mountain.

  32. Steve Spurrier on PFT regarding Clowney’s work ethic, with reference to Marcus Lattimore”

    “He was OK. It wasn’t like Marcus Lattimore, you know, every player is a little different,” Spurrier said. “His work habits are pretty good, they’re not quite like Lattimore, maybe Stephon Gilmore, Melvin Ingram, some of those guys, but when the ball is snapped he’s got something no one else has.”

  33. CK really needs to focus on fundamentals!! keeping on insisting to throw to Crab when one on one is stupid!! reallly stupid!!!.. i dont see montana throw to JR all the time.. even when his one on one!!!!

    niners need to draft a legit QB!!!

  34. Darn, I have to agree on everything you said. That being said Kaep going to get a new contract in the 15 to 16 million per season. Book it Dano !!

        1. Razor, I m not familiar with that specific tune but I m familiar with the Scorpions.. I like the song wind of change.. That’s a classic!

    1. MidWest ..
      I dunno .. I’ve read stories stating, there
      are only two teams which makes sense for him ..
      Niners and the Colts … but, who knows ?

      Could be .. Cheatin’ Pete may have
      an interest, too

  35. In some way shape or form Kaepernick needs to become a “pocket passer” in-order to succeed in the NFL. He throws rockets to his WR’s and he has a “love affair” with Carbtree needing to be open all the time. He needs to focus his field of vision and make split second decisions if and when needed. Kaepernick is still a duel threat but at some point in time the issue of “pocket passing” needs to be address. Only time will tell….#GoNiners

      1. Foles had an excellent year, but I don’t think it’ll last. Kelly’s offense messed some teams up but the element of surprise is gone.

  36. note to Coach Harbaw:
    do we need to guess why you did not
    participate in the Pebble Beach ProAm tournament?
    At least this makes question #2 a moot point:
    what would prevent Kaep from caddying for you?

    Oh, yeah; Sarah sez: quash the khakis, fella.
    Miah was not impressed with that look either.

      1. Ok ..

        I’d swap his place for Rogers .. rocket …

        (cuz .. how many times has Kaep beaten him ?)

        imo .. in this “what have you done for me lately” NFL ..
        Rogers used to be elite …

        Is he still .. ?
        h-mmmm .. I think a good debate could be had
        with that question ..

        1. I wouldn’t go quite that far. Rodgers is the best passer in Football imo, but it does show how good Kap has been overall even while learning the nuances of playing QB at the pro level. Niner fans tend to eat their own; putting up opinions from other sources evens things out a bit.

          1. Well, rocket ..
            stats won’t tell you that in one game against
            Rogers … Kaep threw for a bunch
            (the stat-junkies will tell you what it was) ..

            and in another game (against him) .. Kaep
            established a new NFL record !
            (one that which isn’t likely to be broken
            for a long time)

            To the lovable stat-junkies
            (bless ‘em all .. where would we be without them ?)

            I say this =>

            Put that in yer pipe and smoke it !

  37. I agree to a point Grant. I think Kaepernick has relied on his athletic ability far too much and needs to develop as a QB. That said, there is no denying that he has been successful in his first 1.5 seasons. Yes, the 49ers are a talented team, but we’ve seen plenty of QBs be unsuccessful on otherwise talented teams. So…I agree with your areas for improvement, but I look at this from a “glass half full” perspective. I can’t be too disappointed with the success over the past two seasons and Kaepernick has had a lot to do with that success. In short, there are several teams that would love to have the problem the 49ers have with Kaepernick.

  38. Grant, your comments about Mark Sanchez earlier are totally irrelevant, as are most of your arguments as to why Kaepernick is not the QB he should be after 28 career starts. I wonder what you would have said about Drew Brees after 28 career starts. Hell, Peyton Manning for that matter. Take a look at the stats and get back to me on that.

    There was not a single game in that early playoff stretch with the Jets in which Mark Sanchez carried his team to victory in the playoffs. Kaepernick carried the 49ers and played brilliantly in both playoff games in 2012. He outplayed Aaron Rogers, considered by many to be the best QB in football. He played an incredible game against the Falcons, who had torched the 49ers D early in that game btw, and brought the team back from a 17 point deficit. There have been numerous times in which the 49ers have needed Kaepernick, not the defense, to carry the team and he has done that more often than not. He played very well again this year under very difficult road conditions. Give the Seahawks credit for being one of the great defenses of all time. Look what they did to Manning! Losing to them on the road by a whisker is certainly nothing to be embarrassed about, and if you’re looking for accountability from Kaepernick look no further than his post-game comments. He owned his mistakes and admitted that they cost his team the game so I don’t know why you keep beating the drums about his lack of accountability for errors or weaknesses.

    And this nonsense about Steve Young always improving as a pocket passer? What??? You make statements that have no basis in reality, and for which you have no tangible proof. None whatsoever, and certainly not any personal experience. Were you even old enough to watch football in 1988? Do you have any personal memory of the way that Young was “progressing” as a pocket passer that year? No. Of course you don’t because if you did you wouldn’t make such a ridiculous statement Grant. Young actually had a chance to take the starting job away from Montana that year. Harris Barton has gone on record saying that Bill Walsh was exaggerating the extent of some very minor injuries that Joe had that year because he was becoming disillusioned with Joe’s play that season, and after the debacle at home against the Vikings in the playoffs in ’87 Walsh was short on patience. He gave Young a chance to take the starting job, he replaced Joe in a number of games early on that season, and started against the Cardinals in Arizona but Young REGRESSED, and lost to the Arizona Cardinals in a game in which the 49ers were up by 3 touchdowns in the first half. But of course you don’t remember that. How could you?

    If you have some weird bone to pick with a young QB with a year and a half of starts under his belt and 4 playoff victories to his credit, fine. But every time you try to justify it you only make it more obvious that you are a troll with very little experience yourself, not only as a “journalist” (if you could even call what you do on this blog journalism), but even as a fan. Your handle, even on the trajectory of Steve Young’s career, which is pretty well documented, is worse than sketchy. One thing I know for sure is that if you had been writing articles like this from 1988 through 1993 when Steve failed to take the job from Joe even though Bill Walsh gave him the opportunity, and then went on to miss the playoffs in his first year as a starter and lose two consecutive NFC title games to the Cowboys, one of them AT HOME, you would have been ripping Steve too, until he entered the HOF of course, at which time you would have said you always knew he was a great QB! Ha! What a joke!

    There isn’t a QB in history that didn’t have a great many things to improve upon after 28 starts. But you just keep beating this dead horse until Kaepernick is a perennial pro bowler with the respect and admiration of the entire NFL, which has already begun to earn BTW, and you are still just a lowly little troll with a second rate blog. Awesome. Nice work. NEXT!

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