Though the San Francisco 49ers still technically have meaningful football to play in the 2022 season, fans, pundits, and opposing teams alike are wondering how John Lynch and company will handle the quarterback position next spring. Will Brock Purdy remain under center after his magical run in 2022? And what about Jimmy Garoppolo, who held the position until he was sidelined with a broken foot? Trey Lance is also still on the team despite only appearing in two games but is already being pined after by opposing fans.
Speaking with 95.7 The Game, Peter King addressed the 49ers quarterback situation moving forward and made a bold declaration about Purdy’s place in San Francisco’s future.
“If Brock Purdy takes the field six more times, it’s going to be his job in 2023,” King said. “You are not going to take the guy out of the game and put him behind Trey Lance, whether he wins the Super Bowl or not.”
Now, Purdy taking the field six more times would require the 49ers to make it all the way to the Super Bowl, which, in turn, would mean he played well enough to lead San Francisco to the biggest game of the year, but after starting off the 2022 NFL season as the team’s third-string quarterback, being in the running for the starting spot in 2023 would be an incredible development indeed.
Purdy is Embracing his Opportunity with the San Francisco 49ers
Speaking with reporters on Friday, Kyle Shanahan was asked about the prospects of putting a rookie seventh round pick in position to lead a team to the Super Bowl. Is the moment too big for the 23-year-old from Iowa State?
“I don’t think so,” Shanahan said via 49ers WebZone. “I think Brock, naturally, you’d have to ask him his whole life story, but I think he’s a guy who’s probably always been counted out and he is always trying every day to prove people wrong and so I think his urgency I bet has always been there,” Shanahan said. “I bet you that’s why he has been a starter as freshman and one of the leaders of his team even as a young college player and I think he came here with that exact attitude, but I bet it was the first time he felt it from everybody. You don’t get that much in college and I think you get that a lot in the NFL.”
“I’d like to say our team is stronger than I think a lot of them, so you get that huge here, but I think that’s an adjustment a lot of rookies have to go through. They all think it’s real important to them, then they get to feel what it feels like for people to do it for a living and not just trying to make money for themselves, but there’s families in there and I think Brock’s always had that mentality and when you put a guy like that in a group like this, it just makes it that much stronger.”
Call it the benefit of being a four-year starter in college, but Purdy’s poise has been one of the aspects of his game teammates have lauded all season long, with Shanahan calling him the “most poised rookie he’s ever been around” earlier this month. If ever there was a rookie who could accomplish the seemingly impossible, Purdy is a player worth betting on.
Trey Lance has a Chance to Return for OTAs
Even if Lance’s spot as the 49ers’ unquestioned franchise quarterback is now somewhat in jeopardy, he’s expected to be healthy enough to return to the field in time for OTAs, even after having to undergo another surgery, according to Ian Rapoport.
“Sources: #49ers QB Trey Lance underwent a second surgery on his right ankle to remove hardware that was inserted during the first surgery,” Rapoport wrote. “He experienced irritation based on the location of the hardware. Will be on crutches for 2 weeks, fine for OTAs.”
Will Lance be able to return to his collegiate form in 2023 and really challenge Purdy for the starting spot moving forward? Only time will tell, but if he’s healthy enough to play, the competition should be incredibly interesting for fans to follow.