Friday marked the official start of Colin Kaepernick's third season as the San Francisco 49ers franchise quarterback.
The team's unquestioned leader in 2015, Kaepernick returns motivated to prove that missing the playoffs a year ago was just a one-time aberration. The signal-caller's offseason work was well-documented and highly-discussed, and now it's time to see the fruits of his labor.
The last of 11 speakers on training camp report day, Kaepernick addressed reporters about a variety of topics that will be tracked throughout August.
Here are 10 things the quarterback said that will get you pumped for the upcoming season.
- Asked about his personal goals multiples times in the interview, Kaepernick insisted that he is focused on the letters on the front of his jersey – not the name on his back.
"Once you're on the field, you're playing. You're not worried about anything other than doing your job to help your team," he said. "It's a team game. That's all we're worried about is trying to win as a team."
- Kaepernick is his own biggest critic. He studies film of other quarterbacks, but mostly picks apart his own game. That's why he worked so hard this offseason – to fix what he felt could have gone better in 2014.
"I watch what I need to improve on, (and) what I can do different," he said.
- So when starting safeties Antoine Bethea and Eric Reid commented on Kaepernick's growth in throwing the deep ball and looking off defenders, the quarterback modestly wrote it off as doing his job.
"It's just trying to be the best quarterback I can be for this team," he said. "Whatever work I need to do, I'm doing it."
- The relationship between the head coach and starting quarterback is obviously an important one. And there's no friction between Jim Tomsula and Kaepernick.
"Tomsula's been someone that's been great to me since I've been here," Kaepernick said. "(He's) never acted any different towards me now than he did when I first got here, which I something I greatly respect about him."
- There are a few aspects of Geep Chryst's new offense that Kaepernick is eager to show the world.
"You'll see those things when the season comes," he said.
- New downfield threats Torrey Smith and Jerome Simpson have Kaepernick ready to air it out.
"We have a lot of weapons on offense that we could use," he said. "I'm looking forward to seeing how that pans out for us."
- Another free-agent acquisition Kaepernick mentioned was Reggie Bush, who is the NFL's active leader in receptions by a running back.
"I would say he's easy to throw to because of his skill set," Kaepernick said. "What he's able to do, the way he can move and his natural ability, he's a very talented player.
- It's set in stone that Anquan Boldin and Smith will be Kaepernick's top-two targets. But who will emerge to be the No. 3 wideout remains to be seen.
"Just looking forward to seeing how they compete," Kaepernick said. "Ultimately, it will be the coaches' decision how that shapes up, and it will be the players' decision by what they do in this training camp."
- Add Kaepernick to the list of people who believe that Vernon Davis will bounce back from a down year in 2014.
"Vernon's a hard worker. He's going to do everything he can to help this team win," Kaepernick said. "He's shown that every year he's been here."
- Like the rest of the team, Kaepernick is thrilled to have All-Pro linebacker NaVorro Bowman back on the field – especially since he pushes the quarterback to improve in practices.
"He has a well-known presence on the field. It's something everyone respects," Kaepernick said. "They respect how hard he works, the time and effort he puts in, and ultimately the way he plays this game."