The San Francisco 49ers have yet to make a decision public on who their starting quarterback will be Sunday at New Orleans.
But when coach Jim Harbaugh hinted Monday night he could stick with the hot hand, apparently he meant it.
A week after leading the 49ers in a 32-7 rout of the Chicago Bears in his first NFL start, Colin Kaepernick will get a second. Jim Trotter of SI.com reports that while Harbaugh declined to make a public announcement, he privately informed Alex Smith that Kaepernick will be the starter.
“I'm going with Kaepernick,” Harbaugh told Smith, according to Trotter. “Alex, I'm sorry.”
Smith was sidelined in the victory over the Bears with a concussion. This right here is further proof why players are going to be reluctant at all times to admit that they may have suffered a head injury.
In Smith’s place, Kaepernick was dynamic. He completed 16 of 23 passes for 243 yards and two touchdowns against the Bears defense that entered as one of the best in the league.
Smith’s uncertain health status will continue to make this a gray area but soon he will be healthy and barring a letdown from Kaepernick the 49ers may have finally found the replacement they’ve been seeking for Smith. Remember, the Niners made a play for Peyton Manning in March.
“The way we view it right now is we have two quarterbacks that we're confident in, that have won for us and we believe in,” Harbaugh said. “To me, it's the opposite of a controversy. A controversy is an argument between opposing points of view. This is a decision that will be made from a team aspect, coming from the same direction.”
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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune