San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick Must Improve In Red Zone

By Ronnie Hampston
Colin Kaepernick passes the 49ers to a win
Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

QB Colin Kaepernick doesn’t have many holes in his game, but there is one thing that does stick out with him. Kaepernick’s quarterback play in the red zone has been one of his Achilles’ heels as he is developing into one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL.

In the last two seasons, Kaepernick and the San Francisco 49ers year ended on plays in the red zone. Kaepernick has an arsenal of targets this season, and will look to improve on his red zone production.

With the threat of Kaepernick taking off to run, you would think that it would nearly impossible to stop him in the red zone. People fail to realize that throwing the football in the red zone is one of toughest things to do in the NFL. The passing windows are smaller, and the margin for error is smaller than usual.

Kaepernick may have to add a little finesse to his game in the red zone. He has one of the strongest arms in the NFL, but he will have to pick and choose when to display the rocket arm.

Top-tier NFL quarterbacks such as Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning, and Tom Brady excel in the red zone due to them being able to throw a variety of passes. You rarely see Kaepernick throw the back-shoulder fade in the red zone, and it is something that could help him immensely. With Brandon Lloyd, Vernon Davis, Michael Crabtree, and Anquan Boldin as his targets, it will reduce Kaepernick’s stress levels when he is in the red zone.

The development of Kaepernick will be crucial to the 49ers’ success, and if teams think he is scary now, they should be prepared to live a nightmare when Kaepernick takes his game to a new level.

Ronnie Hampston is San Francisco 49ers writer for, follow him on Twitter @Ron_Hamp, “Like” him on Facebook, or add him to your network on Google.

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