Doug Robinson: Kaepernick the future of NFL QBs

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 30 2013 12:10 a.m. MST

The spread offense has spread to the NFL game, clearing the way for the evolvement of the quarterback and the likes of Kaepernick, Wilson, Newton, Griffin and, at least for a season, Tebow. The advantage is obvious. Defenses must account for the running threat of the quarterback. On pass plays they can't drop as many defenders into coverage. On running plays, the offense has a numerical advantage in the box because the defense can no longer ignore the quarterback (and, too, the offense doesn't block the end on option plays – they "read" him – freeing an extra blocker). When Kaepernick saw the Packers' defensive end come flat down the line of scrimmage, he pulled the ball from the running back and ran around the end 56 yards for a touchdown.

Then again, it does have the anticipated hazard of exposing the quarterback to injury. Griffin suffered a serious knee injury, and Vick has suffered from the hits he has taken as a runner and a passer.

With his size and speed, Kaepernick seems almost invulnerable. On Sunday, the future of the game will be on full display.

email: drob@desnews.com

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