San Francisco 49ers head coach Chip Kelly met with the media today and said that Colin Kaepernick would start at quarterback for the team against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, October 23 at Levi's Stadium.
"I think there are some things that he did on Sunday that you can build upon," Kelly said. "For his first extended playing time since last year, I thought there were some real positives there that we need to continue to try and build with him and get him going and he gives us the best chance against Tampa Bay this week."
Kelly was asked what he liked best about his performance against the Bills. "I thought he kept a lot of plays alive," Kelly answered. "Sometimes the protection broke down but he kept some plays alive from that standpoint. Did a good job keeping the ball out of harm's way. Didn't throw any interceptions...I thought he did a good job protecting the football for us on the offensive side of the ball."
Following Sunday's 45-16 loss to the Buffalo Bills, Kelly would not commit to a starting quarterback for the 49ers' next game. "Yeah, we'll see," Kelly said when asked if Kaepernick would start for the 49ers against the Buccaneers.
Kelly stated that Blaine Gabbert will likely remain the team's number two quarterback, barring any injury or setback. Kelly was asked about Christian Ponder and his amount of snaps during practice. "Yeah, Ponder gets some snaps in there," Kelly said today. "I think he's done a really nice job on our scout squad and he continues to take random snaps here. The difficulty is just the number of snaps that you have overall. Your one has got to get X amount of snaps to get ready. Your two has got to get X amount of snaps to get ready. So Christian gets sprinkled in there a little bit and we try to get him some reps in terms of where we are.
"There just aren't enough reps to go around to get three quarterbacks ready to play. And then obviously you only got to dress two on game day so right now, it's Kap as one and Blaine as two."
Kaepernick's performance against the Bills differed greatly from one half to the next. He started the game well, completing 8 of 11 passes for 135 yards and a touchdown. During the second half, he was just 5 of 18 for 52 yards as the Bills outscored the 49ers 28 to 3 following the intermission. His passer rating of 144.1 during the first half was a sharp contrast to his second half rating of 39.6.