As it appeared that the San Francisco 49ers were on the verge of letting a playoff game slip away on the road against the Green Bay Packers at the “Frozen Tundra”, Colin Kaepernick and the 49ers offense came out on a drive which would swing the game either in their favor or condemn them to a disappointing loss. From there until the end of the game, Kaepernick embarked on two scoring drives that quieted many doubters and haters as the 49ers won 23-20 to advance to the NFC Divisional Playoff round.
Down 17-13, Kaepernick led the 49ers on a four-play, 63-yard touchdown drive, which saw him hurt the Packers both with his legs and with his arm. Kaepernick used his legs to gain a first down on the second play of the drive, as he ran for 24 yards in a play which was a designed run all the way. Two plays later, Kaepernick showed off his strong arm, as he threaded and perfectly placed a fine pass which Vernon Davis caught. The 28-yard pass gave the 49ers a 20-17 lead.
But the grand coronation and moment of truth for Kaepernick would come 5:06 remaining and the game tied at 20-20, in what was a drive that if the 49ers did not pick up a first down or two, the 49ers were certain to lose. After being given a lifeline by the Packers with a dropped interception, Kaepernick threaded a pass into Michael Crabtree for a big first down that would get the drive started. Kaepernick picked up another big first down later on in the drive, as he would run for 11 yards that ensured the Packers would not be able to get the ball back and see Phil Dawson kick the game winning field goal.
The 14-play, 65-yard game-winning drive looked like the one John Elway executed for the Denver Broncos in their infamous “The Drive” game against the Cleveland Browns back many moons ago, where he picked up key and demoralizing first downs either by passing or throwing on third down. It was a drive which will change the narrative of Colin Kaepernick as a quarterback and begin to earn him the respect he deserves. When his team needed him most, he came up clutch and led them to the two biggest scoring drives of the season to date.