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Colin Kaepernick: I'll be ready if called upon by 49ers

In an explanation that seems hazy to some, 49ers coach Chip Kelly said this week that backup quarterback Colin Kaepernick is merely healthy enough to be the backup. He needs to build up his weight and strength if he wants a crack at the starting role.

Kaepernick, while agreeing to some extent that he needs to put weight back on, thinks he's just fine.

"I'm always ready to play," Kaepernick said, via CSN Bay Area. "I'm always ready to step on that field and put it on the line for my team."

Kelly pointed to Kaepernick's weight and body strength as reasons for his decision making. Kaepernick underwent surgeries on his hands, knees and shoulders this offseason and spent a majority of his rehab time in the spring when the rest of the team was learning and operating the playbook.

"My strength is still growing, developing," he said. "But, once again, I'm always going to be prepared, always ready to put it on the line for this team."

While we debated the merits of both Blaine Gabbert and Kaepernick this offseason, the growing sentiment was that both quarterbacks would eventually start for Kelly in 2016. Gabbert is putting his body on the line with nearly every zone-read option, which increases the likelihood that he could get injured. He's also seen his quarterback rating dip each week since a resounding opening weekend win over the Rams. Against Seattle on Sunday, Gabbert went 14 of 25 for 119 yards and an interception. Though the offense around him isn't anywhere near replacement level, Kaepernick has flashed the ability to carry a gameplan on his shoulders in the past.

In that sense, it helps us buy into what Kelly is saying just a bit. In order to substantiate his system in the NFL, he needs to win games on a consistent basis. Wouldn't Kelly jump at the chance to give Kaepernick that chance if the current starter isn't getting it done?

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