The San Francisco 49ers turned over their quarterback depth chart this offseason under new management, and the competition is underway to fill out the roster. The team signed Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley in veteran free agency, then drafted C.J. Beathard in the third round of the 2017 NFL draft, and finally added Nick Mullens as an undrafted free agent. Each brings a little something different to the table, but they all have question marks.
On Tuesday, general manager John Lynch took some time appear on NFL Network’s Total Access show. He was asked about the quarterback position and what he’s looking for short term and/or long term.
Kyle and I, it was some of the first conversations we had when we started talking about working together. And I think the most important thing is how much we valued that position. I think it’s fairly obvious for anyone who watches the league, but when you find a franchise one, you got a chance each and every year.
We set out to find that guy. Right now we’ve got Brian Hoyer, Matt Barkley, and Beathard, who we drafted from Iowa. Do we have that franchise guy? I don’t know. We’re hoping one of those guys, right now it’s Brian Hoyer, we’re hoping he takes it and runs with it. But I can tell you this, we’re committed to finding that guy. But we’re very happy with what we have right now.
Kyle Shanahan previously said that Hoyer is at the top of the depth chart at this point, so this was not a shocking revelation. But, even without actually revealing any new information, he did not try and hide with his answer. No general manager wants to give up all the details, but the good communicators can speak to the topic without playing the ridiculous games we sometimes see.
I don’t think the 49ers anticipate Brian Hoyer or Matt Barkley turning into a cornerstone franchise quarterback, but they also don’t know what C.J. Beathard will be able to do at the NFL level. Hoyer showed some things with Shanahan in Cleveland, and maybe we see something stunning develop out of this. But it’s nice to have the GM not completely blowing smoke up our [site decorum] with his answer. I can live with that.