SANTA CLARA -- The 49ers have pulled back the reins on quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s running this season. That is certainly the perception. But have they?
In reality, Kaepernick’s numbers are not much different than what they were a year ago during the regular season.
In seven games as the starter last season, Kaepernick averaged six rushing attempts for 34 yards per game. He scored just two rushing touchdowns as a starter. (His biggest output came in a nine-rush, 84-yard performance in an overtime loss at St. Louis.)
In the first 12 games this season, Kaepernick is averaging 5.75 rushing attempts for 31.3 yards. He has three rushing touchdowns. In Week 2, Kaepernick gained a season-high 87 yards on nine rushes against the Seattle Seahawks.
Do the 49ers consciously limit Kaepernick’s rushing attempts in the regular season?
“I really don’t think so,” 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman said. “I think we don’t want him carrying the ball every play. I definitely think there’s a certain number in our mind that would take place. But, absolutely not, once we get to the game, it’s time to go.”
During the postseason, it was time to go for Kaepernick last season. In three postseason games, Kaepernick gained 264 yards and three touchdowns on 25 rushing attempts.