Football Outsiders' "Audible at the Line" series is a personal favorite, but Aaron Schatz had some memorable zingers in this week's must-read edition.
"I know all of these Kaepernick scrambles are exciting, and they're getting good yardage, and I have to give him credit for getting out of bounds instead of getting himself killed, but honestly, this stuff can get addictive if you do it too much. With a guy like Kaepernick, you get worried that he's going to forget to be a passer first. A couple of glasses of wine can improve a good meal, but I don't want Kaepernick sitting on the side of the road in the middle of next season, chugging Mad Dog 20/20 from a bag ..."
Schatz has a compelling point. I'm not sure he was really begging this question, but what if Kaepernick becomes totally predictable? What if he forgets how to pass and devolves into the illegitimate love child of Davee and prison yard version of Michael Vick? Yeah. I went there.
Let me be clear, it's not like he will automatically regress. I don't expect him to regress. Regression would be a gift from Vishnu, one that I'd honor with incense and gas station brandy. While we're dealing with a limited sample size, he did have the third-best regular season QBR. If I'm the 49ers, his completion percentage has to be a cause for concern. Completing just 62.7 percent of his passes, Kaepernick isn't the most accurate passer in the league. But that said, he's incredibly efficient, and he knows how to help his team win.
It's difficult to conjure a scenario where run happiness derails Kaepernick's game, but playoff football has rattled even the best of NFL quarterbacks. Arguably the Rams gave us the recipe for success. Generate pressure early and often, forcing Kaepernick from the pocket without giving him huge running lanes.
It seems like most commentators are more-or-less awe-stricken by his deer-like running ability, but as some of our talented readership has already pointed out, he's not as elusive as Russell Wilson, and we handled him fairly well, all things considered. Look, as long as our safeties don't stand around like spectators (I'm talking to you Green Bay!), we should be alright. In any case, it's going to be a shootout. I'm looking forward to it.