San Francisco 49ers head coach Chip Kelly said today that quarterback Colin Kaepernick would is not play on Saturday in the team's Week 2 preseason matchup against the Broncos in Denver. Kelly stated that the goal is to get Kaepernick ready to play next week against the Green Bay Packers.
Kaepernick will do some light throwing during practice today, but will not participate in team drills. Kelly said that the plan is to see if he is able to fully practice next week in preparation for the team's third preseason game. The coaching staff wants to ease Kaepernick back into practice. Blaine Gabbert will likely get the start on Saturday against the Broncos.
Chip Kelly: Kaepernick won't play vs Broncos, planning on getting him in next week vs Packers. Will throw on side today but not vs Broncos— Cam Inman (@CamInman) August 18, 2016
The quarterback has been dealing with soreness in his shoulder for the past week. Today, Kelly described the injury as an "upper-arm muscle issue." The discomfort has been enough to keep the quarterback from taking part in team drills since last week and also sidelined Kaepernick during the team's exhibition opener against the Houston Texans on Sunday.
The last time Kaepernick fully participated in team drills was Wednesday of last week during the 49ers' open practice at Kezar Stadium. On Tuesday, the team signed quarterback Christian Ponder to a one-year deal. He took the roster spot of quarterback Thad Lewis, who tore his ACL against the Texans on Sunday.
49ers head coach Chip Kelly has said that Kaepernick's injury was day-to-day and had hoped that he would return to practice this week. "It's nothing that's a long-term thing," assured Kelly. "It's just a day-to-day thing. He says he feels better as we go, but we're not going to push him so that we can make a proper evaluation of him."
Chip Kelly: Kaepernick will throw more today, but won't do 7-on-7 or team. It's upper-arm muscle issue. Expects he'll be full-go next week.— Matt Maiocco (@MaioccoCSN) August 18, 2016
Kaepernick started the 2015 season as the 49ers' starting quarterback. He tore a ligament in his throwing hand's thumb during an October 22 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. During his next game, a November 1 matchup against the then-St. Louis Rams, Kaepernick said that he suffered a bone bruise and cracked cartilage. That game would be his last of the season before being benched in favor of Gabbert and eventually being placed on injured reserve.
Gabbert, who was signed by the 49ers prior to the 2014 season, went on to win three of his eight starts as the team finished with a 5-11 record. While Kaepernick recovered from offseason surgeries, Gabbert received the majority of the reps at quarterback during the 49ers' offseason program.