What do you know about 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and the type of offense he runs and how do you see yourself fitting into that offense?
“I think I’ll fit in very well. You know, I come from a background, a football background, so I know a lot about coaches and things like that. And I have a lot of, you know my grandpa and uncles have a lot of great things to say about coach Shanahan. And having watched his schemes and offensive philosophy and style, I think I’ll fit in very well with that. And I’m just looking forward to getting there and practicing and getting ready to work.”
How stunned were you to go this early? I guess, a lot of the mock drafts had you fifth, sixth or seventh round.
“Yeah, I mean I don’t really pay attention to the mock drafts very much. There’s, I mean I had a lot of communication with various teams. And yeah, I’m confident in my abilities and you know I’m just thankful the 49ers and coach Shanahan’s staff you know, saw the potential in me and they believe in me enough to give me this opportunity. And like I told them, they won’t regret it.”
How much communication did you have with the 49ers leading up to this?
“I talked quite a bit with [49ers quarterbacks coach] coach [Rich] Scangarello and we talked on the phone a lot and he came out for a private workout and we got on the board and did some film work for a little while. And it went really well. I don’t think it could have gone better. I felt confident coming out of that and you know, the communication from then on out.”
Did you talk to 49ers general manager John Lynch or Kyle Shanahan much?
“Not very much, no. Not leading up to it. But, I did get a lot of words from coach Scangarello from what they thought of me, and it was all good stuff and positive stuff and that’s that.”
The fact that the 49ers don’t have a franchise quarterback, they’ve got a couple veterans here, but the fact that they don’t have a franchise guy, does that make this maybe more appealing for you?
“You know, I don’t know. I’m looking forward to wherever I got drafted and just getting the opportunity to go in there and work my butt off and do the best I can to help the team. You know, whether that’s wherever I’m going, running the offense and prove just to coaches and the team and teammates that I want to be a part of this program. I want to be a part of making the 49ers a great team. And that’s my philosophy right now going in, to do the best that I can do to help this team be successful right away.”
How much does playing at Iowa and the pro-style system, do you feel like that gives you an advantage coming in as a rookie?
“Yeah, I think so. I think compared to all these other quarterbacks in this draft class, one of the benefits is just because of the system I played in. They put a lot on the quarterback at Iowa. I had to make checks in the run game, pass game, ID the Mike. The other thing like that, in the NFL it’s what you have to do, and I think that’s given me a step ahead of a lot of the other guys.”
What was the feedback you were getting leading up to the draft, as far as where people expected you to go that you heard?
“I mean, I heard anything from the third round to the sixth round. There was no pin-point on where I was supposed to go. So, you know I was just going to make sure I was ready for anything that happens, and that’s what I’m doing right now. I was just ecstatic to get that phone call from Mr. Lynch and you know, I’m just pumped to be a 49er.”
Do you think you could start in the NFL this season?
“Yeah, I mean I’m confident in my abilities. Like I said, I think I am a very good quarterback and I’m confident in myself. You know, I understand, I can’t wait to get there and get the offense and the playbook down and get with the guys and prove that I have what it takes. I know I have what it takes to be a starting quarterback in this league and for the 49ers.”
What was your grandfather’s advice about the draft process?
“Yeah, I’ve been in communication with him throughout this process. And he’s been through it a ton of years and he has so much experience in it. He just told me to just stay positive throughout. You know, anything happens, because you really never know what’s going to happen on draft day. So many things change, this happens, this happens. He just said to stay positive because he knows me and knows that wherever I ended up I was going to get a great opportunity. And once I got with teams they were going to see my abilities and be lucky to have me now. Now that the 49ers believe in me, I’m going to give it my everything to not let them down and they won’t regret it.”