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Colin Kaepernick arrived in Arizona on Saturday to begin an 11-week quarterback curriculum before the 49ers’ offseason program begins in April.
Kaepernick posted an Instagram photo from Arizona and tagged Cleveland Browns cornerback Joe Haden and 49ers practice squad running back Kendall Gaskins. Other 49ers expected to take part in the workout program are Bruce Ellington, Quinton Patton and fullback Bruce Miller.
Under terms of the collective bargaining agreement signed in 2011, NFL coaches are not allowed to work with their players from the end of the season until the beginning of the offseason workout program. NFL clubs that hired new coaches are allowed to begin their programs on April 6. Kaepernick’s offseason work in Phoenix will likely conclude April 4.
Quarterbacks coach Dennis Gile told CSNBayArea.com last week he would meet with Kaepernick over the weekend to present a plan to help Kaepernick to become “more consistent and efficient.”
Kaepernick's passer rating and his yards per pass attempt dropped every season since he took over as the 49ers' starting quarterback in the middle of the 2012 season and helped the 49ers advance to Super Bowl XLVII.
Kaepernick threw 19 touchdown passes and 10 interceptions with a passer rating of 86.4 this season. He rushed for a career-high 639 yards. But the emphasis during his time in Arizona will be to develop his skills as a pocket passer.
“He’s gotten by on athleticism, and he’s made some great plays and had some great games," Hall of Fame finalist Kurt Warner said. "But I think the goal is in the time that I’m going to have with him is just to see where he’s at and what he knows about the position and how far we can push the envelope as far as helping him develop as a pocket passer.“
Warner, a two-time NFL MVP and Hall of Fame finalist, will work a couple days a week with Kaepernick, mostly in the film room and on the board to hone his mental understanding of the game. Gile and partner Mike Giovando will begin working with Kaepernick on all aspects of quarterback fundamentals and techniques.
Gile said he also expects Hall of Famer Steve Young and Trent Dilfer to visit and provide Kaepernick with additional assistance.
“During the Super Bowl week, all those guys will be around,” Gile said. “It’s really up to Colin who he wants to be around. Kurt, Trent and Steve are three Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks who have a ton of knowledge.”
While training at EXOS performance facility in Phoenix, Kaepernick will receive strength, power, movement, speed, conditioning, and injury prevention training, along with integrated nutrition and recovery support, according to an EXOS official.
In the past, Kaepernick’s offseason training outside of the 49ers’ building consisted almost exclusively of weight training and conditioning. This is the first time he will work in the offseason with independent quarterbacks coaches.
“There were obviously quite a few quarterbacks coaches who reached out over the last few weeks,” agent Jason Bernstein said. “This is a good mix between Colin getting individual work with Kurt and Dennis and being able to throw to top receivers and translate it to the field. It’s a different approach, but I think it’ll be a good mix.”
Kaepernick will take part in 7-on-7 passing drills with draft prospects, as well as such NFL players as Haden, on defense.
The group of pass-catchers with whom Kaepernick will work includes Odell Beckham (New York Giants), Jarvis Landry (Miami) and Austin Seferian-Jenkins (Tampa Bay). Two of the top wide receivers in the upcoming draft, Jaelen Strong (Arizona State) and Kevin White (West Virginia), will also be working out at EXOS.