Colin Kaepernick didn't sound like a man playing catch up in the San Francisco 49ers quarterback competition.
Kaepernick's confidence remains high entering the third week of the preseason. He still feels good about reigniting the competition with Blaine Gabbert after sitting out the team's first two preseason games with shoulder soreness.
So is the competition still on?
"Yeah, most definitely," Kaepernick said on Wednesday. "I'm going to go out and show everything I can these next two games, and make sure I put my best foot forward to show this organization, this team, this coaching staff what I'm capable of."
Chip Kelly said earlier in the day that playing time between the two quarterbacks for Friday night's home matchup with the Green Bay Packers has not been discussed.
Kaepernick, however, sounded very much like a player determined to make his 2016 preseason debut.
"It's great to be back out there, great to be back practicing with my teammates and getting ready for this next game," Kaepernick said. "Everything's been going great. Everything's been going as planned, so (I'm) excited to get out there this Friday."
According to Kelly, Kaepernick has fared well in his return to practice. Both competing quarterbacks have split first-team reps this week.
"(Kaepernick is) on track, and we're excited," Kelly said. "We're hopeful that he'll be ready to go. But again, we're not going to put the cart before the horse. We have a system."
If Kaepernick feels healthy following Friday's practice, Kelly said, "then he's going to play."
Kaepernick began throwing lightly during joint practices with the Denver Broncos. He later worked up to throwing 55-yard deep balls during warmups before San Francisco's preseason road victory.
He called the shoulder fatigue in his right arm, "very, very frustrating."
"(It was) not something I was expecting, but at the same time, it was something I had to deal and make sure I was prepared for this coming game," the quarterback added.
A "pitch count," is now a thing of the past for Kaepernick, Kelly said.
"I was following doctors' orders and what our trainers had recommended," Kaepernick said. "It was something we wanted to make sure we stayed on top of because it is the preseason, and we have a long season ahead of us to make sure everything is going as planned."
Kelly noted that Kaepernick remained sharp by taking mental reps during the practices he missed. Kaepernick impressed his coach with his decision-making in practice.
"There's not indecision in terms of he doesn't know where he's going with it," Kelly said.
For his part in the equation, Kaepernick continues to compliment Kelly's system for its quarterback-friendly nature.
"I don't think there's any reason for me to be cautious or feel uncomfortable in the offense," the signal-caller said. "I'm very excited about what we're capable of doing and the opportunities we do have."