SANTA CLARA -- Quarterback Colin Kaepernick is experiencing what has been described as a “tired arm,” “arm fatigue” and a tight throwing shoulder.

But there is no indication Kaepernick is experiencing “dead arm syndrome,” which is defined as sensory reduction or loss in the arm as the result of a shoulder dislocation or subluxation.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter, citing two sources, reported Monday that Kaepernick is dealing with “a dead arm.” 

Kaepernick did not practice Thursday and Friday, then was held out of the 49ers’ exhibition opener Sunday against the Houston Texans. Kaepernick’s condition appears to be a result of usage, not from a hit or dislocation. As with every NFL team, quarterbacks are off-limits to contact during 49ers practices.

When asked Sunday night if there was any concern Kaepernick will be able to practice Wednesday and Thursday against the Denver Broncos, 49ers coach Chip Kelly answered, “That’s not what I’ve been told.”

Kaepernick has been getting treatment on his throwing shoulder while he has been out of action.

“It’s really a day-to-day thing,” Kelly said. “It’s nothing that’s a long-term thing. It’s just a day-to-day thing. He says he feels better as we go, but we’re not going to push him so that we can make a proper evaluation of him.”

Kaepernick is in competition with Blaine Gabbert for the 49ers’ starting job.

After surgeries on his non-throwing shoulder, right thumb and left knee, Kaepernick was not cleared to begin light throwing in the offseason until May. He did not take part in any on-field drills until the team’s final minicamp, June 7-9. The week before the opening of training camp, Kaepernick received final clearance from his surgeon, Dr. Peter Millett of the Steadman Clinic, in Vail, Colorado.


Kaepernick lost significant weight and strength during his rehabilitation. He said last week that as much throwing as he did to get ready for training camp, it was nearly impossible to replicate the same intensity of practices.

“I threw quite a bit,” Kaepernick said. “But you can’t reproduce that live action, though and intensity and quick twitch that you need when you’re going against a defense.”

Kelly said the quarterbacks threw from 86 to 102 passes per practice through the nine practices in which Kaepernick participated.