After impressing San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Tomsula with his performance against the Atlanta Falcons, quarterback Blaine Gabbert earned himself a second start.
Against the Falcons, Gabbert completed 15 of 25 passes for 185 yards, with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Though satisfied, Tomsula won’t commit to Gabbert past Sunday’s contest against their arch-rival, the Seattle Seahawks. CenturyLink field is a venue where Kaepernick has traditionally struggled, and the 49ers haven’t won a game at since the 2011 season.
“Blaine did a nice job. I liked where he was. I liked the way he handled the game,” Tomsula told the media on Monday. “I liked the way he played the game. And I want to move forward with Blaine. And we’ll go from there. That’s all I have for you.”
Overall, the 49ers have recorded just one victory against the Seahawks in recent years — a 2013 game played at Candlestick Park. In the past three meetings between the two teams, Seattle has outscored San Francisco 56-13. Their last meeting came in Week 7, where the 49ers were defeated 20-3.
Tomsula doesn’t believe the teams struggles against the rival should be pinned solely on the quarterback, Gabbert, or Kaepernick, for that matter.
“Again, the San Francisco 49ers have not played up to their potential or capabilities in playing the Seattle Seahawks. So, I’d like to say it wasn’t one guy. It was a team effort,” Tomsula said. “Blaine’s a different guy. He’s his own player and he’s going to go out and play football the way he plays football within the structure of our offense.”
Besides their struggles against Seattle, the 49ers have also struggled significantly on the road this season — all of their wins have come in home games. They have been outscored 147-58 on the road, a differential which currently sits as the worst in the league. Tomsula addressed the matter of the teams poor road record on Monday.
“That is something that we talked about this week,” Tomsula said. “I don’t put it on crowd noise, I don’t put it on those things, but just coming out rolling, just go. And that’s our focus this week. Just, let’s go. We’re leaving on Saturday. Let’s just full-steam ahead. We don’t need to sit back and pause and this and that. Let’s just go. Let’s start this week and take it all the way through the game.”
After another home less Sunday night against the visiting Arizona Cardinals, this game could make for a statement victory for Blaine Gabbert in more ways than one.