The San Francisco 49ers still have a confusing quarterback situation, and the 2023 NFL season seems to be bringing more uncertainty for this room. I don’t think anyone thought the 49ers would have gone through what they did last year at the QB position.
First off, the team seemed to have intentions of moving off of Jimmy Garoppolo last year as they hoped to give Trey Lance the keys to the franchise. Well, because of an injury, the Niners were not able to trade Garoppolo, so they kept him around as the backup.
Lance was given the first-team reps and was clearly being deployed as the QB1 of the team. And then, disaster struck. Lance went down with a broken ankle in the beginning of the 2022 season and was pronounced out for the year. Well, Garoppolo, who wasn’t even supposed to be with the team, was then thrust into the lineup.
So, there were the first two unexpected events to happen to this team. And, like usual unfortunately, Garoppolo went down with an injury, which paved the way for a rookie Mr. Irrelevant pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, Brock Purdy.
And not only did Brock Purdy break every norm for rookie quarterbacks in general, but the fact that he not only went 5-0 as a starter, he earned a 107.3 passer rating and led the 49ers to two playoff wins during his starts, going 7-1 overall in eight games for the team.
It was one of the most unexpected things the NFL has ever witnessed. Purdy suffered an elbow injury in the NFC Championship Game, which has brought us to where we are now.
Purdy is still on the mend, and there is no guarantee that he’ll be ready for week one. Trey Lance is still in the picture, but there seems to be the occasional rumors picking up that the San Francisco 49ers might trade him but also may hold onto him. The team also signed Sam Darnold in free agency, who quietly played quite well in 2022 and might not be as firmly in the backup role as some may think.
It’s really a total mystery as to who starts for the team come week one. My thought process is that the 49ers eventually trade Trey Lance before week one begins once they get more confirmation that Purdy can indeed be ready for week one or get close to it.
I think they have faith that Sam Darnold could hold the fort down for a few weeks if needed, but man, once again, the San Francisco 49ers have another uncertain QB situation.