ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) San Francisco 49ers tight end Vance McDonald remembers quarterback Colin Kaepernick leading the team to the NFC championship game in 2013 with his ability to make plays all over the field.
McDonald feels as if Kaepernick is starting to regain that form and the confidence that comes with playing every week after being selected as the starter in Week 6 against the Buffalo Bills.
''(He is) just having a lot more patience in the pocket and having a lot more cleaner reads,'' McDonald said. ''He got warmed up and you look at him the last three weeks, the guy is putting up great numbers.''
In his first two weeks as the starter, Kaepernick completed 46 percent of his passes for 330 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.
But in the past four weeks, Kaepernick has completed more than 58 percent and thrown for 1,110 yards with eight touchdowns and two interceptions.
Offensive coordinator Curtis Modkins said it was natural to expect an improvement in Kaepernick's game from his first start in Buffalo as he has started to get healthy and get through the rust of not playing football for much of the past year.
''He had some injuries that he was dealing with,'' Modkins said. ''He missed the offseason. It was his first game back. I think what's important though is that he's steadily improved from that point on and I don't see why that won't continue the way he works.''
Although the 49ers are on a 10-game losing streak, the recent play of Kaepernick has teammates and coaches excited. And as Kaepernick continues to work toward developing better chemistry with his teammates in hopes that his improvement will soon turn into wins.
''Well, I think it's showing more and more every week,'' Kaepernick said. ''The more I get comfortable, the more receivers and offensive line get comfortable with what's going on, I think we put up more and more yards, give ourselves more and more opportunities to score. Now, we just have to convert those opportunities into points.''
Kaepernick is also finding success on the ground. He rushed for 113 yards in the 31-24 loss to the Miami Dolphins last Sunday and has 373 yards on 46 carries this season, averaging more than 8 yards per rush.
''I think part of it is this offense lends itself to that,'' Kaepernick said. There's more opportunities for (runs), especially being in three-receiver sets most of the time, a lot more space out there. So, scramble lanes are bigger. When we do run zone-read there's more space there as well.''
NOTES: Linebacker Shayne Skov (knee) has been placed on injured reserve. Skov appeared in nine games this season and had two tackles on defense and eight on special teams. Safety Marcus Ball was promoted from the practice squad to the active roster and the team signed linebacker Wynton McManis to the practice squad.
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