Colin Kaepernick, Blaine Gabbert to split reps evenly

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  • By Tyler Dragon NFL.com
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San Francisco's quarterback competition has officially begun.

Niners coach Chip Kelly told reporters on Sunday that Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert will divide first-team reps evenly.

"We are going to split it right down the middle. I think we've got 24 reps today with the ones," Kelly said. "So (Colin Kaepernick) and Blaine (Gabbert) will split it right down the middle with the ones and twos."

There were rumblings this offseason that Gabbert was the leader in the clubhouse. During organized team activities Gabbert took control of the offense and even showed signs of leadership while Kaepernick recovered from various ailments. A stark contrast for a QB who was ran out of Jacksonville after three atrocious seasons.

Kaepernick, who underwent offseason surgeries on his right thumb and left knee in January after having left shoulder surgery in November, has a skill set that would seem to be ideal in Kelly's offense. Yet the Nevada product has regressed since the 49ers lost to Baltimore in Super Bowl XLVII, and now he's stuck in a rather grotesque QB battle.

Back in 2012, it would have been laughable to consider Kaepernick being locked in a battle with Gabbert. But times have certainly changed, and Kelly said there's no timetable to name a starting quarterback.

"Sometimes if you put a preconceived date on it it's not fair and I've been in them before. I just think they express themselves in how they express themselves," Kelly said when asked about naming a starting QB. "Obviously you'd like to get it done sooner rather than later. But you don't want to get it done sooner and make the wrong decision. I think how we train and what we do on the practice fields and obviously the opportunity to play in preseason games will give us a real good indication; we hope as we head into the regular season."

It's going to be interesting to watch this quarterback competition unfold to say the least.

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