Watching this game really highlighted to me the difference between the traditional pocket passing QB offense and the new school mobile QB offense.
I thought Matt Ryan played very impressively. He made several throws that just made my jaw drop. But that really got me thinking... Isn't the best offense the one where you have to make the least number of difficult throws? Brady, Brees, Rogers, Ryan. These quarterbacks are celebrated for their ability to complete passes when nobody is open. But to me, the fact that they are throwing to receivers who aren't open may be a sign of a lack of innovation in their offensive philosophies.
(A great example is Bill Walsh's West Coast Offense. Part of the reason it was so effective when it first came out was because the concept of timing routes were so new defenses didn't know how to account for it. As great as Montana was, I think that you could have plugged many QBs into that system at that time and they would have become a HOFer. But as defenses adjusted, the windows for throwing into became tighter and now you need the accuracy of a Rogers or Ryan to execute it effectively).
In comparison, I feel that Kaepernick can but doesn't have to make those tight window throws as often. I don't completely understand the read option yet, but from what I've read, it's advantage comes from the fact that you are forcing the defense to take one person out of the play so that you always have a numbers advantage somewhere on the field. It felt like Kaepernick was making a lot of throws that were wide open that weren't the result of a blown coverage, but by manipulating the defense. I think this is why his interception numbers are relatively low and why he has been able to succeed in this league so quickly.
So is the Read Option here to stay? No doubt. Will defenses figure out how to defend it better? Of course. Has it made this season one of the most interesting seasons in a decade? Totally. And I'm so glad that the coach of my team was open-minded enough to bring this new school offense to center stage.