SANTA CLARA – Coach Chip Kelly referred to the 49ers’ four exhibition games as “huge” when it comes to determining the team’s starting quarterback.
But there is plenty for Kelly and his offensive staff to evaluate during the practice sessions as they seek to gather more information before naming a starter for the 49ers’ season opener Sept. 12 against the Los Angeles Rams.
So what will Kelly continue to analyze in the practice sessions?
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“You look at precision,” Kelly said on Friday. “How well are they operating? What’s their decision-making process? Are they hanging too long on a read? Are they quick to move on if in their progression, one or two are covered, how quickly do they get to three? Do they get stuck? Do they get caught in 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 holding the ball too long?
“Part of it is getting the ball out on time. It’s a timing-based offense in terms of getting the ball out. So those are things that you can observe. How they’ve picked things up from a mental standpoint? Are they dialed in, in terms of what we’re doing?”
Neither quarterback appears to have gained any separation in the competition. Kaepernick appears to have a better feel for the zone-read game, while Gabbert has exhibited a quicker release from the pocket.