When the Niners traded for Blaine Gabbert back in March, the move was perplexing. The team had a decent enough backup in Colt McCoy. What was the point in tempting fate with a guy who had been absolutely dreadful in three years with the Jaguars? Wasn’t the team going to be completely and utterly fucked if Colin Kaepernick got hurt?
But since is the Niners we’re talking about, they got the benefit of the doubt. Maybe Jacksonville was just a bad spot for Gabbert (note: Jacksonville IS a pretty bad spot for anybody). Maybe it was just the pressure of being a top 10 pick. Surely, with the expert coaching of Jim Harbaugh, and the knowledge the he has no task other than to backup Kaep, a newly relaxed, revitalized Gabbert will finally display some of the talents he showed at Mizzou.
If there’s one takeaway to be had from last night’s Ravens-Niners game, it’s that Blaine Gabbert is still a horror show of a quarterback. His final line of the night was 4-for-14 for just 29 yards and (of course) an interception. And you know what? He actually played worse than those numbers suggest! Even his completions sucked. On a third down pass late in the second quarter, he threw a pass behind a receiver. He reached back to catch it, and in the process, fell down a yard shy of a first down. The Niners subsequently punted. It was like he was bribed by Tebow’s PR firm to make his preseason work with the Pats last year look half-decent by comparison.
In the third quarter, Josh Johnson — formerly of the Bucs and Bengals — came in and looked considerably better than Gabbert. At this point, even fourth stringer McLeod Bethel-Thompson looks like a far better option. If the concern back in March was that the Niners would be screwed if Kaepernick went down and they were stuck with Gabbert, that problem is a thing of the past. At this rate, there’s no chance in hell he even makes the team in the first place.