Source: 49ers indeed benching Kaepernick, will start Gabbert

Colin Kaepernick has completed 59.3 percent of his passes for 6 touchdowns and 5 interceptions.


The 49ers' eventful day just got more dramatic.

Quarterback Colin Kaepernick has been informed that he will be benched, FOX Sports 1's NFL insider Mike Garafolo confirmed. Bay Area Sports Guy's Kyle McLorg first reported the story.

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Kaepernick, whose early-season struggles have been well documented and who was rumored to have a falling out with some teammates, will be replaced by Blaine Gabbert next Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons.

Head coach Jim Tomsula said after last Sunday's game that he would be "evaluating everyone." Monday's move comes only hours after the club traded tight end Vernon Davis to Denver in a deal which also involved multiple draft picks.

Kaepernick took over at quarterback in Week 9 of the 2012 season when starter Alex Smith suffered an injury. After leading the 49ers to the Super Bowl that season, Kaepernick never let go of the job.

In the summer of 2014, Kaepernick inked a six-year contract worth up to $126 million, including a $13 million signing bonus and up to $61 million guaranteed. The guaranteed money beyond this year, however, is only guaranteed should Kaepernick suffer an injury. (The team has until April 1 of each year to decide whether to keep Kaepernick at his guaranteed salary that upcoming season or cut him.)

The 49ers' 2-6 start has been underwhelming to say the least, but it has hardly been all of Kaepernick to blame. After undergoing an offseason of severe turnover, the 49ers have struggled to find cohesion. On top of that, San Francisco's running back and receiving corps have been battered. Starting running back Carlos Hyde missed Sunday's 27-6 loss in St. Louis with a foot injury, and backup running back Reggie Bush suffered a knee injury in the game, which the team fears is a torn ACL.

Receiver Anquan Boldin also missed the game with a hamstring injury.

Nonetheless, Kaepernick's numbers are down significantly this season, with the 27-year-old on pace for just 3,230 yards passing, 10 touchdown passes and 12 interceptions. He also on pace for the fewest rushing yards of his career since taking over as starter.