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Morning Tailgate: Nov. 20

Posted by Taylor Price on November 20, 2012 – 11:49 AM

Who will start at quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers in New Orleans this week? Perhaps Jim Harbaugh will shed light on the decision-making process in his 4:30 p.m. PT conference call with the media.

For now, speculation over who the 49ers will start on the road against the suddenly hot Saints will have to continue.

Here’s what we know: Alex Smith still has to be cleared for contact. Meanwhile, Colin Kaepernick had a very successful showing in first career start against Chicago completing 16 of 23 passes for 243 yards with two touchdowns and a quarterback rating of 133.1.

Before Smith suffered a concussion, he was 19-5 since the start of 2011 and led the 49ers to the NFC title game. If healthy, Smith provides the 49ers excellent leadership, play-making ability and decision-making for the offense.

Kaepernick, however, remains the hot topic of discussion after leading the offense on four consecutive scoring drives to start the game leaving Chicago defenders thoroughly impressed.

“He made some good throws when he had to,” Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher said. “He did whatever he wanted to; he had all kinds of time.”

Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle wonders if a quarterback controversy is brewing.

Kevin Lynch of SFGate.com makes a case for who should be the starter.

Katie Dowd of the San Francisco Chronicle recapped the 49ers strong special teams performance.

Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury News offers his takes on the quarterback situation.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee examined Vernon Davis’ productive night.

Barrows also provides his games notes, including a look at Aldon Smith’s big game, plus game grades.

Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com offers an instant game recap from the 49ers win.

Maiocco shared Harabugh’s comments on going with a “hot-hand” at quarterback.

Mike Sando of ESPN.com shared the comments of 49ers players on Kaepernick’s strong performance.

49ers.com offered a game story from the 49ers win, a notebook full of Aldon Smith statistics, photos from the game, a Cover 2 video recap presented by AAA and several videos and press conferences from the win.




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Posted in Announcements | 60 Comments »

60 Responses to “Morning Tailgate: Nov. 20”

  1. By hmrhead1 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    Wow. The lemmings dont even give 11 any props. Thats just sad! 11, Ive agreed w you from Day 1 that a change was needed. Its so awesome to have WRs finally anle to contribute beyond 10 yards. If Harbaugh is telling the truth about the hot hand,no way he can pull out Colin. Alex has NEVER played to that level against a premier defense.

    11 For President!

  2. By Your worse nightmare on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    What do you call the Saints, Packers, Giants, Lions, Jets and Seahawks defenses, mediocre??

  3. By bow53 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    ck7 is good but guess what who’s gunna finish the season, thats right ALEX SMITH, u alex hater are to young to understand , how football is played, we came this far w/ winning season on ur hands, no brainer if u gunna change the starting qb. one piece of advise to some guys who thinks like a kid, ‘DON’T BE SWAYED BY JUST ONE GAME!!!!!1

  4. By Doesmatterwho on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    Are you serious dude? This is the bears team that have only played 3 teams now with a current winning record. Alex never played put up those Numbers against a elite Defenses? Please,,,, you sound like that kid that gets the prize truck for Christmas then complains about the color and the new car smell. Since Jim came all Alex has done is win. the guy has had some bad games but he has had some very memorable ones (Saints or have you forgotten) . There has been even ones where all he, I and any true faithful were happy that we put more points on the board than the other team. Coiln had an very very good game Im happy for the guy. But until he does that on the Giants or Even the Sea Chickens (good division foes are always harder than non division foes) You better hold that last comment of “Premier Defense” to yourself. I live in “da Bear” country and this win WAS SWEET!! But the bears for the last 3 years have always been contenders until mid season then their dominate team disappears maybe this win last night helps them perform there yearly Houdini Act. But great win colin great win.

  5. By Larry Lawson on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    Did anyone notice how Colin was able to fire the ball down the field for long gains? Does that have anything to do with being able to create time by moving in the pocket? If Alex gets to return next week I hope Colin is allowed to take part in a lot more plays!

  6. By Randy K. on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    Did anyone see how Joe Staley handled Julius Peppers all night? Or how Franky all but de-cleated Lance Briggs? Let’s not forget the performances of the other fellahs!

  7. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply


  8. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    the bears fans last night at the game were saying we didnt stand a chance with kap as our qb

  9. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    oh how they were gunna stomp us

  10. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    a huge group of bears fans parked right next to us in the parking lot, about 12-15 of them came pouring outta this big van

  11. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    and then for the next 4 hours told us how they were gunna smash us

  12. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    needless to say, after the game when we got back to the war wagon, thats what we call my tailgating vehicle, those bears fans were looooooong gone

  13. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    guys woah slow the boat

  14. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    first great game everyone stepped it up and played true niner ball to their potential….now yes CK has better skills and can play football in the NFL and win

  15. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    if alex is cleared to play and practice, according to coach harbaugh, he and kaepernick will spilt the 1st team reps this week

  16. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    so lets stop right there …..if coach does not start alex it will be a distraction in the locker room …therfore if alex is cleared to play he will …but for any reason things dont go well early in the saints game look for the coach to make the move ….alex plays hold on to the ball and throw if he absolutly has to …he hands it off and throws checkdowns and maybe hits a wide open guy ….

  17. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    and with it being a short week, I can see coach giving kap another start, although if alex can play he will most likely start, but if he struggles coach now knows he can put in the kapper and have a chance to win,, its great to be a 49er fan we now have 2 qb’s who can get the job done,,,,,,,,,,,,,IN HARBAUGH WE TRUST

  18. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    works for him for ure …ok …but i will still ay he cant not and will not be able to win a superbowl with those kind of things ….our defense plays unbelieveable when we have a lead …..alex has 3andoutidus when he can not check down or throw the ball away ….and dont for one second belittle the defense for saving several games late because alex 3 and outed late in the game several times …justin smith saved several games first hand ….as well as carlos rodgers and several others …..alex ball is ok just not going to get us better than division

  19. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    I think it was very team-mate like of kaepernick to say that if alex was out there he would have had the same success, he went on to say that with the way the o-line was giving him a clean pocket he and alex were sharing info on the sideline as to where the best place to go with the ball was

  20. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    I wonder way the bears stayed in man coverage after they dared the kapper to thrown and when he had success they stayed in it?? I mean you would think after vernon burned them a few times they would have started playing more zone but they were stubborn and stayed in man and got burned by,,, ” THE ‘KAPPER “

  21. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    and what a weak division it is …..i will leave that there ……look alex will play if cleared and will prob do ok …but remember if we dont score any points early ….we are done …our defense is not that good at holding for an entire game …our defense will dominate with a lead 3 points doesnt matter …but we have to score so good luck to alex maybe he wil;l get a wake up call and play better and really try to be a good QB ….

  22. By bow53 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    like i said ck7 is good, but thats not the big name last nights game in my opinion , its ALDON SMITH……the man of the night baby!!!!!!!

  23. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    willis, bowman, the smith’s aldon and justin, brooks, ‘sop, ray-ray, goldson, brown, whit, d-rodg,, the entire defense made a statement to the bears and the rest of the league, we are for real, and for anybody to say this aint no championship caliber defense, doesnt know what they are talking about

  24. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    alex may or may not be cleared …actually the coach sounded like he wanted CK to start the whole time …..for the locker room is alex is cleared he will play ….if not then we get to see the kaeper again and see what he is made of a 1 hit wonder or the real deal ….I for one form the start as everyone knows wanted anyone but alex …..I too watch the games and watch everything that alex does and it seems mediocre and repetative and other teams have picked up on his checkdowns ..get to alex as fast as possible and you win is what the other teams say to get fired up ….that is no fun

  25. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    so you really think alex would have won that game ….dont think so with all the times CK out ran tackles and made great throws to keep the drive going ….i do not think i saw CK check down one time to the flat …..he played very good so give him the credit and move on …..

  26. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    coach harbaugh will announce the starter for the saints game today at 3pm pacific time on KNBR 680 AM

  27. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    kaepernick said alex would have had the same success not me you idiot, you a lame a$$ motherfu_ker 11years with no brain I given him all credit it just shows you only read the filth you post

  28. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    we all knew 11years with no brain would start swallowing kap’s love muscle after the game against the bears,,,he wants soooo bad to tell everyone I told you so.

  29. By 49erdefense2012 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    advice to the moron who calls himself 11years with no brain,,get $hit straight before you try putting people down, your an idiot and prove it daily

  30. By bow53 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    well said “D” lol…….

  31. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    i am sorry i did not mention anyone or point fingers …my opinion is just that an opinion and i was posting an attached to my previous ….so yes i read your posts and moved on …..for me my opinions are mediocre and often bad yes ..but that is because the niners are 5-0 in superbowl and i as a niner fan want that to be the best record ever and have it added to …..and no alex can not do it …..and yes of course CK and the coach and the news and anyone on the team is going to say the right thing at that time ….does not make it true or even factual at that but more importantly stay healthy niners and make a run …woooot

  32. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    our defense plays to its best when we have the lead early ….they really shine when we do and with a lot of 3 and outs they get tired just as anyone would …but will not stop when we have a lead they find anothr gear and bury teams in their own misery

  33. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    yes for sure the niners can play good with alex as they have several times ….but get stalled when alex’s checkdowns go for 6 yards and a punt

  34. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    all hinges on saints game that is a must win patriot game not so much ..well should not be i mean we should be able to beat the cards and rams …the seachickens are going to be out for blood again since the coaches do not like each other ..i am begining to like the rivalry …..have to win em all with the seagulls on our heals but should be fine even with alex ….problem is the coach seems to be favoring the better QB …who would have thought

  35. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    anyone have a good idea as to who is a freeagent after this year

  36. By dave g. on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    Hmrhead1. Quit acting like a litlle giddy b!tch. Its amazing how people jump on and off peoples jock based on a great game. I want to see Kaepernick do well. That why he was drafted-To be the QB of the future. He was almost a 1st round pick. You don’t draft a QB that high unless you have plans. Now on Alex, the point was 11 said we should cut him-NO ONE AGREES WITH THAT IGNORANT BS even if Kaepernick takes us to the SB! Lets not lose site that he wanted us to sign Matt Flynn for big bucks!

  37. By dave g. on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    As a 49ers Fan I hope to see Kaepernick or Alex Smith take us to the Super Bowl. I dont care which one but I do know it would have been stupid not to sign Alex this year. My main goal is not to prove someone wrong or right but to win a SB. You insecure deuche bags are more concerned with being right.

  38. By dave g. on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    All along 11 wanted anyone but Alex. The deuche bag even said Tolzein was the best QB of the bunch. Now he is trying to come off like Nostradameus????? HAAAAAAAAAAAAAA. Really? The game prove that Harbaugh knows what he is doing…thats what matters and thats the reality.

  39. By dave g. on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    MAKE NO MISTAKE: ELEVEN wanted Matt Flynn and thought Tolzein was the best out of Smith & Kaepernick. I did not forget your BS Eleven and neither should anyone else. You soooo full of $hit! HAHAHAHA!

  40. By jamie on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    Man I was wrong about the conservative, simplified game plan that I thought would be called on offense! CK played reqlly well. The biggest thing I noticed in comparison to Alex, other than the obvious stronger arm, was Kaps mobility in the pocket and his good decision making when to throw the ball away if there is nothing open to avoid taking the sack. Alex is one of the most sacked qb’s in the league. True that a sack is better than a turnover but you also dont want to take huge losses all the time either. All that said…I really believe that a qb change in week 11 is not advised. I think Smith should play if cleared. He has played well this year and I dont want to put the season at risk especially with such a tight divisional race with Seattle. Teams have no film on Kap and once they have some it will be tougher on him. If it was week one or two I would say go for it…but not week 11. Kap will be the starter at some point but now is not the time. You dont make a change when ur team has been playing well. Not this late in the season.

  41. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    and the beat goes on …yes..yes and oh wait yes …anyone but alex …yes yes yes ….that clear enough …..alex is a first overall who cant do anything but throw checkdowns sure the team manages wins that woulod be the system you all talk about …well yeeep we saw the alex system and it amounted to some wins and big losses to teams with good records …..what we saw in the bears game was a real QB running the whole playbook and doing it with the same line and the same receivers against a good defense and putting up same numbers or better than alex has on average …..so a 8 year qb with same numbers as a 2year guy with more skills ….yes alex will start if cleared but dont be surprised if the niners doc dont clear him just saying ………go niners …and yes anyone but alex …yes anyone other than alex smith …….anyother QB even harbaugh himself ….than alex ……yes any other QB on the niners …yes anyother QB in the league …..so tired of a millionaire trying to be a QB …yes…yes any other QB ….if that is not clear or out front or to the point than i do not know what is unless i was to make another name on this blog and compliment myself

  42. By bow53 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    11i’m really trying hard to understand u but i just can’t get it, really…ur way of thinking is really out of this planet , dude, tell u what at least acknowledge hmr1 whos siding w/ ur nonsense, do the normal thing……at least……..do something good in this world for once…..

  43. By 49thsamurai on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    How amazing is our coaching staff? Honestly i think we could have won with Tolzien at QB last night. As amazing as Kaepernick’s first start was, awesome job by the O line, ridiculously effective job the defense did (should have been a shutout except for that pity call) the most beautiful thing to see was the job out coaching staff did. With all respect to Lovey and da Bears coaching staff i have never seen such a obvious mismatch. They were toying with them all night and they honestly had no answer. I can finally say with all my heart that top to bottom this is the most talented 49er team i have ever seen. Wonder what the odds are of the Giants and the 49ers winning it all in the same year are? Who has it better than us SF fans? NOOOOOOOOOOOBODY

  44. By DMT on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    I am NO fan of Alex Smith as the starting qb long term for the 49ers, but where my Kaepernick enthusiasm is curbed is here, the Bears game planned for Smith, not Kaep. So with that being said, if I’m picking a starter with my heart, it’s Kaep all the way, but picking with my head, as much as it pains me, I have to go with Smith.

  45. By hmrhead1 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    Is it really so F’n hard for you guys to see the light? You cannot possibly be sitting here saying that Alex should be back in as the starter. Why is it that Colin was able to dominate the #1 Defense with the same sorry receiving corp and the same porous Oline??? He makes plays. Period. I’m not bashing Alex. I actually love Alex. Toughest heart in the league. But he should not be our starting QB. Maybe you’re right that it’s too early to tell if Colin is good enough yet. But there’s no denying that our offense looked better last night against a premier defense then any game Alex played against the same level defense. My only point is that it shows its not our receivers or Oline that are the problem.

  46. By hmrhead1 on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    By the way, i just love all of you blog tough guys! You crack me up Dave Gerbil, I mean Dave G. Blog muscles. Gotta love it.

  47. By DMT on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    Hey hmrhead1, I read your post, and as I said before, it pains me, but for the short term, I have to stay with Smith. The reason is this, many times a baseball pitcher will be called up from the minors, and his first time through the line up, or even a few games, he’ll look like the best pitcher ever, that’s because the league has no tape, or scouting report on the guy. If Kaep can perform close to the same way, when a team has a week, and film to prepare for him, then I’m with you.

    BTW, I love your take on the blog bullies, I won’t even waste my time typing out his name;

  48. By Niner Forever on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    Its a pretty good problem we have. Two good quaterbacks. The way I see it is that Greg Roman will have to come up with big plays for both players. Play them both since they have good individual qualities and this will make up a more explosive team!! Go Niners!!!

  49. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    it is not like haveing 2 great receivers or RB’s …a QB is a leader of the offense all plays stat with him he shifts protection and adjusts at the line based on his reads …and yes then runs the play ..lots going on there …sure the more they see of kaeper the more they can try and defend but who is to say he wont get better ..look at the greats you think the teams they faced had no idea who they were playing against …not saying he is premier but give him a chance the o line you said sucked when alex is in there blew people off the line did things at will …why because the QB got the ball out threw it deep and changed it up …i did not see CK throw a checkdown the whole game …not saying he didnt but it was a well oiled machine running on all cylinders and pushing maxximum horsepower a sight for sore eyes i tell ya ……….

  50. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    again alex will start if cleared and i will be surprised if he does not …the coach has been a QB and is going to let alex try and lock up his spot as best he can …and yes if he falters …he will go to the kapper and never look back ….

  51. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    the niners needed this you could tell from the players they were rejuvinated and almost giddy at how the offense worked the field ….was a real treat to watch I for 1 think CK made a really good showing and against a good defense …..and as all the fans at the stadium could reply ….it was awesome to watch and so exciting the running game worked on almost every play and most of the plays were changed at the line based on CK’s reads …..what a treat it was and am looking forward to more when it happens ….give him a standing O and lets see what happens next

  52. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 20, 2012 | Reply

    I guess the real question is if CK does start and does as well against the saints then what ????…..as well as if alex falls falt or rather does good …..if he starts look for him to try and prove himself this just might have kicked him into another gear …maybe

  53. By mfkram64 on Nov 21, 2012 | Reply

    this site kills me it takes like three tries all the time to post..wtf..i’ll give a fourth..i live in new england and i’ve been a niner fan since the 70’s people around here think i got on the band wagon when they won in the 80’s an 90’s i likedt john brody and gene an vic washinton were my favorite niners growing up..around here the patriot fans drafted a guy called bledsoe and his story is like alex smith’s came to a suckie team and was drafted number 1..finally parcells shows up and they go to super bowl but lose after that bledsoe wins more then he loses but can never win the big ones anymore so fans r on him and coaching staff..well he gets hurt and a guy named brady steps in and well history has been made for the patriots..my point is a guy never losses his job to injury was the stats quo well bledsoe did and alex is also…kap looked in total control monday night..throwing dimes..rolling out hitting crabs..making plays alex struggles with..alex is not 100% so let kap. have another game on the road against the hottest team right now..coach can dial up another great game cuz he has kap. who can do things alex can’t..

  54. By rjdniner on Nov 21, 2012 | Reply

    After reading the posts on this sight am so thankful that some of you are not on Jim’s coaching staff .Ive already posted my opinion on the QB, s situation? And now let’s see how our def does against the SAINTS, if it’s Alex or Colin, one thing is for sure that 11yrs doesn’t make that decision,…..

  55. By 11yearswithalex on Nov 21, 2012 | Reply

    no i do not but if we dont score any points fast …as always our defense will have problems ….we are geared to stop the run and then grab the lead and then punish teams …..if we 3 and out with tons of checkdowns then our defense will be out there a long time and get tired ……have …to…score…fast…and …early …….no mater who the QB is …problem is alex is a one hit wonder with his checkdowns and lack of reads at the line …..a millionaire trying to be a QB

  56. By mfkram64 on Nov 21, 2012 | Reply

    i have to say watching kap. run the offense monday night was awesome..he look confident and was dialed in all night…he was having fun.. smiling all night..that brings positive energy…deep down all of you who like alex do u feel deep down he is the one to bring the niners a super bowl? we all got a look at what the niners have kap. needs to play sunday let him get the reps this week and what a joy it would be to see him throwing dimes to moss..alex is to predictable..the good defenses read him..and when the d lets up pts. it’s a struggle for the offense why? if u look deep into it c’mon kap is a winner and we saw just the tip of the iceberg…remember coach drafted him high…i say alex isn’t 100% give kap the ball….

  57. By 9erdog on Nov 21, 2012 | Reply

    Alex should get the start, Colin’s played one hell of a great game. no doubt about it. But with that being said Colin did his job as the back up QB, he went out and played his heart out!
    You Alex that amount of time with the ball and you get the same results, we saw that against the Saints, considered one of the best playoff games, ever?
    I’m sure we all remember that MNF game with that AH vic he looked like the next great QB, but look at him now!

  58. By 9erdog on Nov 21, 2012 | Reply

    I mean this was a total team effort, we smacked them right in the mouth and they had no response! Their defense looked like a deer in the head lights. Take either the Viks or last Giants
    game and they were pretty much the same thing, they caught us napping or worse. I not saying that Colin is going the way of vic, what I’m saying (like others) is that they didn’t have time to prepare for Colin. This time on the bench for Colin is not gonna hurt him, matter of a fact IMHO I think its good for him!

  59. By 9erdog on Nov 21, 2012 | Reply

    With Alex its not just the deferent systems and coordinators, but the talent as well. Look at the talent Colin played with the other night! Not to take anyway from Colin he played a hell of a game. And I for one and the includes the coaches!
    I would have been disappointed if he hadn’t played well, Colin has been on the side watching Alex play lights off for a year in the half plus, he had Coach as his mentor. The kid was well prepared for the task at hand!
    I see questions about Alex taking us to the SB, well it sure wasn’t Alex fault we didn’t get there. eat well, be safe!

  60. By iswordsman on Nov 23, 2012 | Reply

    DUDES, BOTTOM LINE: Kaep Scores Touchdowns, as in MORE touchdowns, as in allows the D to play downhill because they know we can score in case the gamble doesnt payoff.
    Anyone notice how much better D played with a nice lead??
    LOVE ALEX, NOT a hater, we gotta score more to be SUPER

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