49ers Offseason 2013: Colt McCoy in the lead for backup quarterback spot

When the San Francisco 49ers acquired Colt McCoy this off-season, it looked like he would get the opportunity to compete with Scott Tolzien to be the team’s primary backup quarterback behind starter Colin Kaepernick. The 49ers only gave up two late round draft picks to get the former Cleveland Brown so it appeared his spot on the team was not necessarily guaranteed. After all, the 49ers promote competition at all levels and Tolzien (or another quarterback brought into the mix) looked to have as good a shot as any to win the back up job.

Taking all of that into consideration, head coach Jim Harbaugh may have surprised some people with his recent comments in regards to McCoy.

“He has been in that role since he got here,” Harbaugh said. “He’s doing very well, picking up the system. And a guy that is really serious and focused on being good and doing a good job. He’s got a lot of things that motivate him to work hard. And he’s worked extra hard, too. He’s doing well.”

McCoy started 21 games for the Browns over three seasons and has a record of 6-15. He has thrown 21 touchdown passes and was intercepted 20 times. The 49ers’ offense will be a change for him and McCoy is relying heavily on Kaepernick as he learns the ropes.

“In my role, I’d love to help him in any way I can,” McCoy said. “We communicate on the field. He’s smart in what we’re doing. He understands the system, the run game, the pass game.

“This is a game-plan specific offense, but during practice, there are things that come up. ‘Hey, Kap, what do we got here? What did you see there? What’s the coverage?’ Different things. He’s been very helpful. He’s an amazing athlete. He’s fast, strong. It’s a time for all of us to get better, and Kap is doing a great job.”

If McCoy is indeed a lock for the backup role, Tolzien may have to worry about his roster spot all together. Tolzien came to the 49ers after he was released by the San Diego Chargers right before the 2011 season. The Niners have thought enough of him to keep him around for two seasons.

Tolzien can always play his way back into the mix but he must also fend off rookie B.J. Daniels. Because of his athleticism, Daniels could help his own case by playing a more versatile role for the 49ers. Harbaugh likes versatility and Tozlien is more of a classic drop back quarterback.

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Al Sacco

Al Sacco is sports expert who knows football, baseball, basketball and hockey. He has spent his time as a sports journalist covering the San Francisco 49ers as a contributor to 49erswebzone.com and Ninerfans.com. He's been a guest on numerous podcasts and has had his work used on ESPN NFL Insiders and USA TODAY.


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