Jeremiah: Top matchups in Week 12
Niners safety Donte Whitner said Friday on the "Dan Patrick Show" that Kaepernick would get the nod. It's hardly a surprising decision at this point. Alex Smith hasn't been taking first-team reps in practice this week, and he hasn't been officially cleared for contact, although that is expected to come before game time.
Smith should back up Kaepernick on Sunday at the Superdome. The larger question is if Smith will have a chance to start again this season.
Smith is getting the hook just at the point when he's playing his best football. Smith is being passed by a quarterback who simply has more tools (speed, arm strength) in his arsenal.