How Far Can Colin Kaepernick Lead the 49ers?
In this era of digital media, when the sports media decides to focus in on somebody, you can't go anywhere without having that person shoved down your throat. If you have turned on your TV, checked out your tablet, scanned the internet, checked your e-mail, listened to the radio or downloaded a podcast over the last few days the chances are good that you have heard the media gushing with their love and admiration for Colin Kaepernick.
And there is good reason that they are gushing about him. Kaepernick and his 49ers played the Green Bay Packers and Aaron Rodgers this weekend in the divisional round of the NFL Playoffs and the 49ers came away looking like champs. Kaepernick victimized the Green Bay defense this weekend as he ran for 181 yards and threw for another 263. throwing and passing for 2 TDs a piece and rewriting the record books on his way to those stats. It was a fantastic performance by Kaepernick in the friendly confines of Candlestick Park.
Overnight, Kaepernick has gone from being a question-mark to being hyped by the media as unstoppable. What Kaepernick did against the Packers was very impressive. Nobody saw it coming. The big question is how will he perform now that everybody knows what is coming and how will he react from going from someone the media was questioning to somebody the media has put on an alter.
One big plus Kaepernick has in his corner his his head coach. Last week, the Falcons were aided by some big mistakes from Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll. This week they will face a much better coach in Jim Harbaugh. Expect Harbaugh to tweak the game plan against the Falcons. The read option will still be a big factor but Harbaugh is smart enough to know he needs to put his young quarterback in positions to be successful, especially early, against what will be a raucous Georgia Dome crowd.
For me, the most interesting part of this game will be to see how Kaepernick handles the environment. In their last three games on the road, the 49ers are just 1-2 and there is a lot more on the line in this game. Kaepernick and the 49ers haven't been in nearly as many close games as the Falcons have been this season. How will he react during "winning time" in a close game? Now that everyone knows just how good Kaepernick can be and he will have a week of the media telling him how great he is, will he be able to live up to the billing?
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