The San Francisc0 49ers first preseason game has come and gone. There weren’t a whole lot of certainties divulged in a 20 point loss to the Baltimore Ravens to begin a series of four “practice” games.
One certainty that became fairly clear is the backup quarterback position being unsettled. Fairly or unfairly, I took to Twitter during the 49ers preseason opener and stated the following about Blaine Gabbert:
I’d be willing to trade Gabbert for some pocket lint and a box of Fiddle Faddle.
My attempt at humor may have been a little harsh, but the performance from Gabbert on August 7 was pathetic. As a top 10 pick out of Missouri with 27 career starts, a career transition to a backup quarterback should have been…….well, manageable. Gabbert showed anything but that against the Ravens. His timing was off. His passes were amiss. The term “deer in headlights” seemed more than befitting. Gabbert’s play was closer to that of an undrafted rookie than a former first rounder going into his fourth year in the NFL.
In Gabbert’s defense, an NFL offense is complex, and forming cohesion with a new arsenal of offensive teammates isn’t easy. Of course, it’s extremely early within the confines of the 2014 NFL season as well. And, there’s the definite possibility that Gabbert will at least earn that guaranteed $2 million portion of his contract yet this year.
Is there an actual competition for the backup position behind Colin Kaepernick? I sure hope so. Jim Harbaugh preaches such as well. With the likes of Josh Johnson and even McLeod Bethel-Thompson on the roster competing for playing time, the opportunity is there. Once again, I’m not writing off Blaine Gabbert after just one preseason game, but the shock factor from his play hasn’t faded. There’s even a grassroots movement to bring back Jeff Garcia in to compete for the job. As one of Garcia’s most adamant supporters, I’m all for it. But that’s just the selfish fan in me.
At the very least, I’m going to have to find out if they even make Fiddle Faddle anymore.