NEW ORLEANS -- Steve Young, the last 49ers quarterback to win a Super Bowl, thinks Colin Kaepernick is capable of doing the same Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens.
"He's answered the bell with whatever's been asked of him to do," Young said Thursday. "You keep waiting for the shoe to drop because of the experience, and it hasn't dropped."
The Ravens dropped Kaepernick's predecessor, Alex Smith, for nine sacks in last season's 16-6 win over the 49ers. Young doesn't see that happening with Kaepernick, especially because of the 49ers' sturdier offensive line.
"He's doing great, they have a lot of weapons and the best offensive line since the 2000 Rams and '92 Cowboys," Young said. "That line dictates the terms on everything."
Like those championship teams of the Rams (Super Bowl XXXIV) and Cowboys (XXVII), the 49ers' line features two Pro Bowlers: left tackle Joe Staley and left guard Mike Iupati.
"If somehow the offensive line is overrun and people are in (Kaepernick's) face, that's hard for anybody. But that's not going to happen," Young said. "This offensive line won't allow that."
Young bought into Kaepernick right from his first start against the Bears, a 32-7 win Nov. 25.
"He made not complex reads but complex throws," Young said. "They didn't ask him to do too much, but what he threw was beautiful. It was shockingly good."
Just as amazing to Young is the 49ers' installation of the pistol offense, which he said provides a quicker bridge to success for a younger, mobile quarterback. Young arrived in New Orleans on Thursday and is serving as a ESPN analyst. He set a Super Bowl record with six touchdown passes for the 1994 49ers in their 49-26 win over the San Diego Chargers.