After leading the 49ers to victory over the Rams, Colin Kaepernick will start against the Seahawks. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

Chip to stick with Kaepernick at QB in finale

The 49ers fans who hate Colin Kaepernick won’t be receiving their wish in the team’s season finale on Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks.

The quarterback will receive another start and there’s no indication he’ll be on a short leash.

“We’re trying to go win the football game,” head coach Chip Kelly said Thursday. “So, Kap will play unless he gets banged up.”

Kaepernick has gone 1-9 as the Niners starter, but gave the team a better chance to win games than proven backups Blaine Gabbert and Christian Ponder. The latter was active for the first time this season after jumping Gabbert on the depth chart two weeks ago.

The game could very well be Kaepernick’s last in Santa Clara as he could exercise the opt-out clause in his contract or be released after the season.

He’s thrown for 2,026 yards with a 57.7 completion percentage for 15 touchdowns to just four interceptions and a 88.2 passer rating. He also was the second-most prolific rushing QB behind Tyrod Taylor with 452 yards on ground. His 7.1 yards per carry were the most of any runner with at least 60 carries.

Staley could return

After missing three games due to a hamstring injury, left tackle Joe Staley is on track to protecting Kaepernick’s blind side this weekend.

But as is usually the case with soft-tissue injuries, the team will be constantly reevaluating how he reacts to an increasing work load.

“[Thursday] is going to be a big test for Joe and then how does he respond when he gets back here [Friday] morning,” Kelly said. “Is there any residual soreness? How does he feel from it? But, so far in the two days of work he’s still been limited in practice.”

This is the first year that Staley hasn’t been named to the Pro Bowl since 2010.

Chip KellyColin KaepernickNFLSan Francisco 49ers

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