The 49ers decided on Saturday that Colin Kaepernick’s right arm wouldn’t be ready for their preseason opener, but they hope the quarterback will be back for the next game in Denver.
“Colin isn’t 100 percent, and it wouldn’t have been fair to put him in and judge him in a competition,” coach Chip Kelly said after his team’s 24-13 loss to the Texans.
Kaepernick has not thrown a practice pass since Wednesday after experiencing what he described as “tightness” in his throwing shoulder. He said Friday he thought he would play Sunday against the Texans but also that he wanted to get on top of the issue before it became worse.
Asked if there was a possibility Kaepernick could miss the upcoming sessions in Denver – the 49ers will scrimmage the Broncos Wednesday and Thursday before their game Saturday – Kelly said he didn’t think so.
“That’s not what I’ve been told, but it’s really a day-to-day thing,” he said. “It’s nothing that’s a long-term thing,” Kelly said. “It’s just a day-to-day thing. He said he feels better as we go, but we’re not going to push him so we can have a proper evaluation.”
Through Wednesday’s practice, Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert had split the 49ers’ first-team snaps in practice. Gabbert, however, has taken all of the snaps with the would-be starters since, including in Sunday’s game. He was 4 for 10 for 63 yards with a touchdown in what Kelly termed an “up-and-down” performance.
“The good thing is he did settle down,” Kelly said of Gabbert. “I thought the ball he threw to Vance (McDonald) was outstanding. There were some real positives you can build on. But there were some throws -- as Blaine would tell you -- he’s going to wish he had those back.”
Kaepernick has said he expects to start one of the upcoming preseason games but that Kelly hasn’t told the quarterbacks specifically how snaps will be divided in those games.
“From everything he’s told me, we’re both getting a fair shot,” he said Friday.
New voice – Kate Scott, a morning anchor on KNBR, handled the radio play-by-play for Sunday’s game against the Texans. You’ll hear her Saturday, too, when the 49ers visit the Broncos.
Scott is filling in for Bob Fitzgerald, who was part of the game’s television broadcast. Ted Robinson normally is in that role, but he is covering diving for NBC at the Rio Olympics.
Scott, meanwhile, also works as a play-by-play announcer for women’s sports on the Pac-12 Network. She becomes the second woman in the Bay Area to handle NFL preseason games this summer. Beth Mowins called two Raiders preseason games on television last season and and did the same for the Raiders exhibition opener on Friday.
Et cetera – Defensive end Arik Armstead, who injured his shoulder a week ago, sat out the game. The 49ers starting defensive line was composed of DeForest Buckner, Mike Purcell and Quinton Dial.
▪ Eric Reid missed the game to be with his wife, who had a baby girl over the weekend. Jaquiski Tartt filled in at safety with the starting unit.
▪ Michael Wilhoite started the game at inside linebacker but Gerald Hodges and Ray-Ray Armstrong also spent a series next to NaVorro Bowman with the first-team defense.