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NFL Notes: Colin Kaepernick, Preseason, Colts

Colin Kaepernick

Albert Breer of TheMMQB.com spoke with three NFL executives and one coach about why they believe Colin Kaepernick is still a free agent just a week before the start of the regular season.

One executive explained that while Kaepernick may actually be more talented their current backup, he isn’t as good of a fit for their offensive system. The executive said he finds it interest that here isn’t more talk about Robert Griffin III still being unemployed.

“It’s not something we discussed, so to talk about reasoning, we’re talking hypotheticals,” the executive told Breer. “Certainly he’s good enough to be a backup. … But we have a good No. 2, a guy that fits our system that we have familiarity with. He’s here for the same reason that (Dolphins coach) Adam Gase goes back to (Jay) Cutler. We know exactly what we’re going to get from the guy. Physically, Kaepernick’s more talented, but familiarity with a backup at that position, knowing exactly what you’re going to get, is more important than the ‘wow’ factor. … It’s like with [Robert Griffin III]; you had him playing a certain way, and he was a hell of a player. But as soon as defenses figured out what they were, and a specific way to play them, that’s where they had to be able to start to win from the pocket. If you can’t do that in this league, it’s tough.

The coach pointed to the fact that Kaepernick has had the most success in a system built around his running ability and NFL teams are reluctant to make changes to their system for a backup quarterback.

No. 1, he was perfect for San Francisco. They were willing to build around him, which he needs,” the coach said. “He’s not a pocket passer. So if you bring him in as a backup, and you’re not Seattle or Carolina, and you don’t have those things built in, it’s like you’re running a different offense with your 1s and your 2s. Mike Shanahan had a great theory on this—he wanted to draft Russell Wilson (in 2012), because if something happened to Robert (Griffin), the transition would be clean and easy. So Kaepernick almost has to be in a place where they’ll build a system for him, and teams don’t do that for backups. That’s why his name never even came up here.

Preseason

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said he believes and has spoken to coaches who also think that the preseason would be better if they reduced the number of games to three.

From my standpoint, we actually just talked about it, coach, Tony [Dungy] and Chris [Ballard], I’ve asked every football guy, ‘How many preseason games do we really need to prepare your team and develop players and evaluate players and get yourself ready for the season?” Goodell said, via Zak Keefer of the Indianapolis Star. “And I think that has shifted dramatically in the last three years. I think that coaches and football people think that you could do this in three [games], and I actually think that’s better for the fans. I actually don’t think the preseason games are of the quality that I’m really proud of. From my standpoint, I think that would be a really healthy shift.

Colts

Colts owner Jim Irsay said that QB Andrew Luck is “coming along well” in regards to his rehab from offseason shoulder surgery. Irsay added that he believes Luck will “be back and have a very, very long and great career with us.

“We’re not shying away from the fact we knew it was time for Andrew to have that shoulder procedure,” Irsay said, via the Indianapolis Star. “But nothing has surprised us [with the recovery]. He’s coming along well, like we expect him to.”