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Colin Kaepernick still 49ers' QB, Jim Harbaugh says

Jim Harbaugh told reporters Monday that he hasn't changed his mind at quarterback.

The San Francisco 49ers coach watched the tape of Sunday's 16-13 overtime loss to the St. Louis Rams and came away discouraged by the defeat but encouraged by the overall play of Colin Kaepernick.

Harbaugh said the second-year quarterback will keep his starting job against the Miami Dolphins in Week 14.

"I still feel that way," Harbaugh said. "There was a lot of positives that were in the game. ... Specifically with Colin, especially after the fumble-touchdown, the way he responded, the way our team responded -- again, putting ourselves in a position to win after that -- and, the same could be said after the safety, too.

"He responded with some big plays," Harbaugh said. "... Just in the evaluation, I thought Colin played well."

When the question of Alex Smith bubbled up, Harbaugh paused before refusing to shut the door on the veteran quarterback seeing the field again this season.

"Alex is not out of this," Harbaugh said. "We feel like Alex is -- we've said it before -- he's one of our guys, he's won us a lot of football games, and he'll be preparing himself to play in each of these games every single week. I mean that's what his mind-set has to be, as if he was the starting quarterback."

Harbaugh insisted he isn't grading Kaepernick on a curve or any differently than how Smith was measured. Asked about Sunday's defeat to the five-win Rams, Harbaugh admitted it was a "tough loss," and not a quarterback problem, but a team issue in San Francisco.

"We have to finish games," Harbaugh said.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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