Not a single NFL team is entering 2023 with more quarterback questions than the 49ers. Months after playing multiple signal-callers in the NFC Championship Game due to injury, San Francisco believes that Brock Purdy, Trey Lance and new signee Sam Darnold can all be "franchise-like quarterbacks." But head coach Kyle Shanahan offered hints at his true thoughts regarding the team's QB pecking order while fielding questions at Wednesday's Dwight Clark Legacy Series event in San Jose.
Here's a look at some of his most notable comments:
On Trey Lance's current status, coming off a season-ending ankle injury: "I think Trey is the best that we've (seen) him right now. Yeah, we gotta get into OTAs and practice, but when you watch his feet, his timing, how he's throwing the ball, he's in such a better place now than he was last year at this time."
On the 49ers' apparent preference for Brock Purdy to remain the QB after replacing Lance and Jimmy Garoppolo: "When you talk about, 'What does that say about Trey?' I think it's so unfair to Trey. What it does say is what Brock did in his eight games. And what Brock did was really damn good."
On whether Lance can still become the long-term QB: "I understand the unusual circumstances of when you trade up for a quarterback with the third pick in the draft how you're expecting him to be the man for a long time. And we did expect that, and I still believe that he can be (that). You're also not expecting the last pick in the draft to come in and play at that level."
On the 49ers' past belief in Lance: "We were ready to go with Trey. And Trey was going to go through a lot (last) year, and I believe he would have gotten to a level where he did similar stuff (to Purdy). He missed that (chance). Brock came in and did it. Now, I truly believe Trey can go