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Harbaugh: Kaepernick Affected by, Overcame Injury

Posted Mar 26, 2014

The 49ers coach admitted that he and his offensive staff made a “conscious effort” to avoid seeing “Colin get hit 12 times a game" particularly after the quarterback's early-season ailment.

If you hadn’t already noticed, Colin Kaepernick doesn’t like to leave the field.

“I think he talks to the trainers more than he does to me about (injuries),” Jim Harbaugh told reporters at the owners’ meetings in Orlando on Wednesday. “Every time I ask him (if) he’s fine, he’s OK.”

The San Francisco 49ers coach did reveal something about his signal-caller that we didn’t already know.

Kaepernick was affected by – but overcame – an early-season foot injury last year. 

The third-year passer, who didn’t miss a single practice in 2013, danced around the topic during Week 7 of the season. Asked about appearing on the injury report for a second time, Kaepernick engaged reporters with a repartee about a supposed hangnail.

Harbaugh admitted that he and his offensive staff made a “conscious effort” to avoid seeing “Colin get hit 12 times a game.”

“Thought four or five maybe,” Harbaugh said, “that’s it.” 

PHOTOS: Colin Kaepernick's Offseason Workout

This was especially the case after Kaepernick suffered the mysterious foot injury; Harbaugh said he couldn’t recall if it occurred in Week 1 against the Green Bay Packers or in another game shortly thereafter.

“It did (hamper him),” the coach said. “I could notice it, especially in practice.

“I think anything when you have a foot or a hand or a finger, it affects you throwing and running.”

Check the stats: In the regular season, Kaepernick averaged 33 yards in the ground game per contest. In the postseason, he rushed for an average of 81 yards per game, including 130 in the Jan. 19 NFC title game. 

“If I can see it, he doesn’t verbalize it and says he’s fine, says he’s going to play through it, which I respect,” Harbaugh said. “I mean, if it ever got to the point where I felt like it was hurting him or an injury could be worse, or he was hurting the team, then I would step in.”


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