The San Francisco 49ers travel to face the Houston Texans on Thursday in their preseason finale. Head coach Jim Harbaugh indicated quarterback Colin Kaepernick will get the start, but would not go into details on how much he would play. The Texans announced that starting QB Ryan Fitzpatrick will not play. Case Keenum will get the start, and rookie Tom Savage will get his share of snaps as well.
Last season, Kap started the preseason finale, and got one drive in. He was 3 of 4 for 64 yards and completed a 43-yard touchdown pass to Quinton Patton. There is no word yet on what 49ers offensive starters will play. I'd imagine the offensive line will be there in full, but I would not be surprised if Kap gets a chance to work more with Stevie Johnson, Quinton Patton, and Bruce Ellington. Michael Crabtree and Anquan Boldin might get some work, but I could see them getting the night off.
The lack of Ryan Fitzpatrick potentially means less of a "challenge" for the 49ers defense, but they'll still get a chance to get some good work in during the game. It remains to be seen how many snaps the 49ers defensive starters will see.
Kap met with the media Tuesday afternoon. Here is a transcript.
Is there anything more to get out of the exhibition season for you guys?
"Yeah, we have another chance to go out, work on our offense."
Last year, I think you played one series in that final game and you guys went on a touchdown drive. Do you remember that or does that set any momentum for the regular season?
"I don't really remember last year's preseason. I'm more worried about the regular season, but when we go out there, we want to be productive."
Why is there no worrisome or concern or anything like that with your guys' performance yet?
"I've never seen worrying help anyone's problems or help them get better. So, we're not going to worry."
When you guys came to training camp, a lot was made about how you guys have more weapons at the wide receiver position. How do you see that playing out with those three wide receiver sets? Who do you think will be the guy who steps in there along with WR Michael Crabtree and WR Anquan Boldin?
"That will be a coach's decision. Whoever's out there, I'll be throwing to."
Do you like the options that are available for that number three job?
"Very much so."
Along those lines, what does WR Stevie Johnson bring to this team? He obviously has experience, has been in the league for a while. What sort of unique qualities does he offer you?
"He's quick. Not too many DBs get their hands on him. He has a great ability to create space in routes."
How do you feel like you're throwing it in preseason and in practices so far?
"I've been doing pretty well. Could do things better. We're always working, trying to get ready for the regular season."
Speaking of getting ready for the regular season, knowing you're probably not going to play much Thursday night, how have you been preparing for the Cowboys and just knowing for four months you'll be playing them? Give me an idea what the preparations been like for that game already.
"We've looked at them a little bit, but for the most part we're focusing on ourselves, making sure we're doing what we need to to be ready for the season."
You had said earlier that you go into wide receiver meetings and talk to them to see if they're on the same page. When something happens like a defensive lineman, Chargers DE Corey Liuget, was able to get to you, do you meet with the offensive lineman, go into their meetings and see if you're all on the same page or what you guys can do differently as a group?
"No, our offensive line is probably the most in-tuned offensive line in the league, I would say, as far as knowing what we're doing, knowing what their assignments are and being on top of things. When you have a physical mistake, you don't go back to the drawing board."
Do you want to see Texans DE J.J. Watt and all their starters play in this game against you in the first quarter?
"I'm not worried about that. That's not my call."
When you look at the play distribution throughout the preseason, you guys have passed a lot more than you run, which is not what we see in the regular season. With that being said, are you looking forward to sort of getting back to that smash mouth football once you do start Week 1?
"We execute the plays whatever the coaches may call. So, that's all we're worried about."
Is that because you guys are just kind of working on things, developing concepts sort of?
"You would have to ask the coaches on that."
Has there been any, just this preseason and training camp on your part of trying to stay in the pocket more or are you, I know the last couple games you have gotten out of the pocket a little bit and run around. Is there any certain aspect you're working on in that area?
"Working on everything, in the pocket, out of the pocket. Ultimately, it comes down to playing football."
I've noticed that the plays have really been getting in fast. I didn't notice any with the first unit, any trouble beating the play clock. Think that's been solved? Has that pretty much been an emphasis this camp?
"Yeah, we have to make sure we get in and out, we have time at the line so we can get our play off. We don't want to be worrying about the play clock."