San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick was benched in favor of Blaine Gabbert, who he had previously replaced as starter, after playing a record-breakingly poor game.
Kaepernick, who was pulled for Gabbert in the fourth quarter of the game, had previously been having a good enough season that he had reportedly been considering opting out of his contract and becoming a free agent after the season was over, according to Fox News.
The snowy game, which the 49ers played against the Chicago Bears, ended with the 49ers losing 26-6.
"Colin Kaepernick's day ends with 4 pass yards and 5 sacks," tweeted sports writer Michael David Smith. "First QB in NFL history with 5 sacks and fewer than 5 yards in a game."
After the game, Kaepernick said that he was "surprised" by the loss.
"It wasn’t something that was expected. I’m always prepared and ready to do anything I can to help this team win," said the quarterback.
The loss comes as the 49ers' 10th in a row, according to Deadspin.
Coach Chip Kelly said that the decision to switch out Kaepernick for Gabbert mid-game was an attempt to start a "spark" for the team.
"We haven’t had any discussions about anything," said Kelly. "It was just my decision to make a move to see if we could get a spark and see where we were."
"At that point in the game, we're down a couple of scores and, obviously, we have to throw it a ton. So we just wanted to see if we could get a spark for our team. There were no permanent decisions or anything like that."
Kelly also acknowledged that he may have been "too cautious" before switching to Gabbert.
Kaepernick said that the decision to switch him out was what the coaching staff thought would help the team do its best in the game.
"It's not about my feelings," he said. "It’s about being able to help this team win. This coaching staff didn't feel like I was out there being able to help this team win, so they made a change, whether I agree with that or not."