NEW ORLEANS -- Joe Montana, who knows something about handling Super Bowl pressure, said 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick looks ready to deal with football's biggest stage.
"He seems to me the kind of guy who, when it comes game time, is able to concentrate on what has to be done and what he has to do,'' Montana said Tuesday. "Even if he struggles early, and I don't see that happening, he's going to be just fine."
Montana, 56, was speaking by phone from the Bay Area. He's heading out to New Orleans on Thursday in advance of the 49ers' showdown against the Baltimore Ravens at the Superdome.
Kaepernick will make his Super Bowl debut at age 25, the same age Montana was on Jan. 24, 1982, when he guided the 49ers to a 26-21 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl XVI.
Montana would go on to finish 4-0 in Super Bowl play and was named the game's MVP three times. In all, Montana threw 11 touchdown passes, no interceptions and had a passer rating of 127.8 in his Super Bowl career.
Known for his calm under pressure, Montana famously pointed to actor John Candy in the stands right before the come-from-behind drive to win Super Bowl XXIII.
Now, the Hall of Famer said the modern 49ers have the proper mentality — and proper coach — for these circumstances.
"Sometimes, we take for granted that there's Super Bowl pressure, but, really, once they kick off it's still the same game. It's still football,'' Montana
The 49ers seemed to take the media hoopla in stride Tuesday. And Kaepernick sounded perfectly capable of pointing out celebrities in the stands.
"Just because you're in a situation you haven't been in before doesn't mean you have to feel pressure from it,'' he said.