The new 49ers coach thinks scheme fit is a reason the old 49ers quarterback hasn’t found a new job.
San Francisco head coach Kyle Shanahan was asked on Monday whether teams think they’d have to change their offense if they were to sign former San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick, and Shanahan answered, “Yeah,” before elaborating that NFL teams want a quarterback who’s going to fit in a specific offense, with little variation.
“You don’t just run stuff and think you’re going to be good at it right away,” Shanahan said. “You’ve got to commit to it and work at it year round, and it’s all the positions. When all your quarterbacks have different ways to be successful, which I’ve been in situations like that and you try to prepare them best, it does take a toll on your offense. What are you trying to get good at? You can’t practice everything. You can’t be great at everything. You’ve kind of got to commit to something and do it over and over and over again and once the type of running game or drop-back game, you’re going to commit to one quarterback is completely different than the other, then that does affect your team. That’s why I think it can be harder when those type of guys are going through competitions and stuff and like that because even though you’re trying to find the best guy, by trying to be fair to those quarterbacks you’re also being unfair to a team. You don’t really know what direction you’re going. So, if you have your pick of the best world, you’d like those guys to be somewhat similar, not just because that’s how you want the quarterbacks, just because of the work you’re doing for the rest of the guys on the roster.”
Kaepernick has a unique athletic skill set, and former 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh did an outstanding job of building an offense around that skill set. But the two coaches the 49ers have had since Harbaugh both struggled to find an offense that could make use of Kaepernick’s skills.
Harbaugh still thinks some smart team can win championships if it puts Kaepernick in the right situation. So far, that team has not been identified.