49ers to Start Kaepernick at Quarterback Over Smith Against Rams

The San Francisco 49ers will start Colin Kaepernick at quarterback over Alex Smith in this week’s National Football League game against the St. Louis Rams.

Kaepernick has started the past two games since Smith suffered a concussion on Nov. 11, passing for 474 yards, three touchdowns and one interception in wins over the Chicago Bears and New Orleans Saints.

Kaepernick, a second-round pick in the 2011 draft, got the start last week against the Saints even though Smith had no concussion symptoms and was medically cleared to play.

49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said today he’s again decided to start Kaepernick over Smith, a former No. 1 overall pick who had a 19-5-1 record as a starter the past two years.

“All these decisions are difficult and you think through them the best you possibly can,” Harbaugh said at a news conference. “Alex is a class act all the way. He’ll prepare as he’s the starter and that’s what we’d expect. He’ll be ready to go in and contribute to this football team.”

The 49ers have the second-best record in the National Football Conference at 8-2-1 and lead the NFC West.

Smith, 28, has completed 70 percent of his passes this season for 1,731 yards, 13 touchdowns and five interceptions. Kaepernick has completed 32 of 48 passes the past two games while also rushing for 37 yards and a touchdown.

“We have two very good quarterbacks,” Harbaugh said. “It’s a unique situation. You have two guys who can win for you, have won for you and who deserve it.”

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