Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
If one player has the weight of the 49ers on his shoulders, it's Colin Kaepernick.
He's only started 10 games (playoffs included), yet he's now one of the most well-known players in the league leading one of the best teams.
Doubters will say defenses will take away Kaepernick's strengths and frustrate him. That could turn out to be much easier said than done.
First and foremost, Kaepernick is already a great pocket passer. He led the league in adjusted yards gained per pass attempt in 2012.
He's also a dynamic runner. By rushing for 181 yards against the Green Bay Packers in the playoffs (an NFL record for a quarterback), everyone knows he's a threat for big gains when he keeps the ball on read-option plays. But it's his scrambling that's even more dangerous.
In other words, Kaepernick will hurt defenses plenty on designed plays, but he'll do lots of other damage improvising.
With one of the most innovative offensive coaching staffs in the league, Kaepernick should be primed for another big season. The Niners may run the ball more frequently early in the season due to their current injury issues at wide receiver, but as more of his playmakers get healthy, Kaepernick should put up more impressive passing stats.