The San Francisco 49ers, as they are still officially called, are badly in need of a shakeup. Just ask longtime fan Daisy Barringer, who week after week this season has chronicled the team's painful performances — one after another. No doubt with that in mind, we learn via the Chronicle that head coach Chip Kelly has pulled starting quarterback Blaine Gabbert and will instead start Colin Kaepernick in this Sunday's game against the Bills.
“It’s not Blaine’s fault,” Kelly explained this morning at a press conference picked up by the Chron. “It’s just as a group offensively we need to be better in a lot of ways. So we’re going to see what we can do and make a move here. It was one the only maneuvers we could make based on our depth.”
The 1-and-4 Niners are on a four-game losing streak, and Kelly appears ready to try pretty much anything to shake things up. Interestingly, his decision may have ramifications off the field as well as on. Kaepernick has been credited with started a national movement among NFL players to protest police treatment of minorities in America by kneeling during the national anthem — an action which landed the 2nd-string quarterback on the cover of Time.
And while we have no idea if Kaepernick will provide the boost the Niners need to win this Sunday, his move to starter may serve to silence some critics who felt that as a backup player he should keep both his thoughts and his politics to himself.