Colin Kaepernick Won't Miss a Beat with San Francisco 49ers' Top WR Hurt

Mike Moraitis@@michaelmoraitisAnalyst ISeptember 8, 2013

NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 03:  (L-R) Colin Kaepernick #7 and Vernon Davis #85 of the San Francisco 49ers reacts after Kaepernick scored a 15-yard rushing touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Baltimore Ravens during Super Bowl XLVII at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on February 3, 2013 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Ravens won 34-31.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The beauty of having a talented, dual-threat quarterback like Colin Kaepernick behind center and plenty of weapons around him is that even with a top receiver like Michael Crabtree out, it shouldn't make much of a difference.

Crabtree, who suffered a torn Achilles during the offseason back in May, will be gone for a significant portion of the regular season as he recovers from his injury. According to Will Brinson of, Crabtree has been placed on the PUP list and is looking at missing the first 10 weeks or so to start the season.

There was a ton of optimism during the offseason that Crabtree would be an elite target and Kaepernick's No. 1 receiver, thus giving the 49ers a dynamic duo in the passing attack. Those expectations will have to be put on hold for the moment.

Kaepernick and Crabtree immediately became a deadly combination when the sophomore signal-caller took the reins of the Niners offense as a rookie last season.

Before that, Crabtree's career was very much in doubt, but his numbers vastly improved near the end of the season after San Fran found itself someone who could throw the ball instead of being just a game manager like Alex Smith.

Not having Crabtree on the field is certainly a negative for the Niners, but that doesn't mean it will affect Kaepernick and company all that much.

Aside from Crabtree, the Niners still have plenty of players for Kaepernick to throw to.

Vernon Davis is the team's star tight end and figures to be even more involved this season. Davis compiled just 548 yards and five touchdowns in 16 games in 2012-13, however, he did have two consecutive 100-yard receiving games to finish out the playoffs against the Atlanta Falcons and Baltimore Ravens.

One less top receiver on the field should do wonders for improving Davis' production in 2013-14.

Anquan Boldin turned out to not only be a steal during the offseason but also a key addition. The Niners struck a deal with the Ravens that had them giving up only a sixth-round pick for Boldin's services.

The former Ravens receiver had an outstanding playoffs last year with two 100-yard receiving performancesone of which was against the Niners in the Super Bowland is one of the toughest players in the league.

In all, Boldin compiled 921 yards and four touchdowns in the regular season, added 380 more yards in the playoffs and also matched his regular-season touchdown mark with four in January and February combined.

Kyle Williams will be the team's No. 2 receiver, lining up across from Boldin after recovering from a torn ACL last season. Williams is widely considered a hard worker, according to Scott Kegley of, so that should translate to success on the field with much of the attention of opposing defenses focused on Boldin and Davis.

All of this and we still haven't discussed the 49ers rushing attack which will be led by elite back Frank Gore. The Niners' No. 1 back has compiled over 1,200 yards in each of the last two seasons and will likely do more of the same in 2013-14.

While there are injury concerns for Gore week to week now that he's hit 30 years old, he does have some support with young, talented backs like Kendall Hunter and LaMichael James to give him support. Both Gore and Hunter will also be targets out of the backfield in the passing game.

And, last but not least, Kaepernick himself is a weapon who will be utilized early and often. With an ability to make plays with his legs, the Niners will get plenty of production on the ground from their QB, and his versatility adds yet another element defenses must plan for.

For those who are dooming the Niners passing attack because of the loss of Crabtree, that is a major blunder on their part. San Fran still has plenty of options to move the ball on offense, and Kaepernick will still be successful in leading his offense to plenty of victories this season.