The San Francisco 49ers‘ Colin Kaepernick played through a foot injury last season, according to Jim Harbaugh and 49ers.com. It is unknown when Kap sustained this foot injury, though it may have occurred as early as week one against the Packers. In Jim’s words,
It did [hamper him.] I could notice it, especially in practice. I think anything when you have a foot or a hand or a finger, it affects you throwing and running.
This should come as no surprise to those who paid attention last fall when Kaepernick’s name found itself on the injury report. Colin may not have missed a practice, but he missed more than one receiver on the field. He also did not run nearly as much as most viewers expected–something chalked up primarily to the coaching staff wanting to avoid hits on their QB, but this may have played a role too. Though Kaepernick did play better in the postseason, as the article on 49ers.com mentions, part of this would be due to risking his body on more runs and opening up the field.
It is nice to have another explanation for Kaepernick’s struggles last season, but excuses can only last so long.
The article also quotes Harbaugh on how he reacts to a potential Kaepernick injury:
If I can see it, he doesn’t verbalize it and says he’s fine, says he’s going to play through it, which I respect. I mean, if it ever got to the point where I felt like it was hurting him or an injury could be worse, or he was hurting the team, then I would step in.
This seems like an appropriate response from a coach to a potential injury. You do not want to remove a player who is just dealing with pain and can play through it without a greater chance of injury. What do you think?