As it turned out Kaepernick was in street clothes to start the game, proving once again that Harbaugh never likes to reveal his hand. A vast majority of the starters figure to get little-to-zero reps tonight.
San Francisco has already trimmed its roster from 90 players down to 75. Another cut will formulate the final roster to 53. For those players on the bubble, this game has tremendous implications.
The Texans put up the first points on the board with a late first-quarter field goal, giving them an early lead. San Francisco's offense, aside from portions of the running game, has looked stagnant thus far under backup Blaine Gabbert.
Another field goal in the second quarter has given the Texans a 6-0 lead.
In spite of an ugly start, Blaine Gabbert was able to find rookie tight end Asante Cleveland for the go-ahead touchdown with less than two minutes remaining in the first half. Unfortunately, that was one of only a few good moments for San Francisco's offseason acquisition.
Veteran corner Chris Cook was able to track down an interception and ran it back into the Texans' red zone where quarterback Josh Johnson found rookie Bruce Ellington in the flats for a late touchdown. The 49ers opened up scoring in the second half with a 28-yard Phil Dawson field goal.
Chris Borland's impressive preseason continues with a pick-six interception. But the Texans were able to answer back with a pick six of their own. As the fourth quarter draws near, we should expect the final bubble watch players to make their last case for a roster spot.
Two more touchdowns from quarterback Josh Johnson have increased the 49ers' lead. They have fired up the discussion about which quarterback should back up Kaepernick—Gabbert or Johnson.
Johnson may be the people's choice after tonight.
Now, the 49ers will shift their focus to the final roster cuts as the team prepares for the regular season on September 7 versus the Dallas Cowboys.
FINAL: 49ers 40, Texans 13
All statistics, records and accolades courtesy of ESPN.com unless otherwise indicated.
Peter Panacy is a featured columnist for Bleacher Report, covering the San Francisco 49ers.
Follow him @PeterMcShots on Twitter.