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Let’s argue: The 49ers need a mobile QB to win the Super Bowl

Plus four of your most unpopular thoughts regarding the Niners

Butler v North Dakota State Photo by Sam Wasson/Getty Images

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” Somebody said, “Let’s argue” is what San Francisco 49ers fans do best, so we’re back with another week.

We will not win a super bowl until we sign a mobile QB - Zae

Zae added some extra shade toward a certain quarterback that is currently injured, but you get his drift. The 49ers need a mobile quarterback, but the term mobile has a different definition when I see that word.

To me, the best mobile quarterbacks in the NFL over the past decade have been Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers. When I say that, you’re instant reaction is, “huh?!” In my mind, mobility is that five-yard square in the pocket where a quarterback buys time with subtle pocket movements or avoids rushers by climbing the pocket. It’s not a QB that we see that looks to run the minute he gets pressure.

So, in that sense, the 49ers need a mobile quarterback. A guy who doesn’t drop his eyes in the face of pressure and has an internal clock that tells him when to get rid of the ball.

We don’t need George Kittle, he’s a great player, but he can’t stay healthy, and there are more needs in terms of o-line and draft capital - Jonny

Now, this is an unpopular opinion. The 49ers had to have flirted with the idea of moving on from Kittle the last offseason. Why else would there be rumors that the team made a run at Austin Hooper? Kittle ended getting extended.

Kittle’s injury has been well-documented, and it’s the reason Kittle fell to the fifth-round. Kittle had suffered a hamstring and ankle pull in 2017, a shoulder A/C/ join separation in 2018, a knee patella sprain in 2019, and a broken foot in 2020. Compared to what he suffered in college, Kittle has been relatively unscathed during his NFL career, which is saying something.

Is Kittle worth his contract if he’s going to miss a couple of games a season? Especially if that money could be spent elsewhere. There are a few other factors to weigh. Could Kyle Shanahan get more out of an average, athletic tight end in this offense now that there are threats on the perimeter? I’d guess that’s how the Hooper discussion went before ultimately betting on Kittle.

Maybe not that unpopular, but ...The Niners should tank their last 3 and get as high a draft pick as possible, then do everything needed to move up and pick Penei Sewell - Dan

I will counter your unpopular opinion with one of my own: The value isn’t there when drafting a lineman early and team’s regret doing so well over half the time. You can play the hindsight game with offensive tackles dating back to Mike McGlinchey and all the way through this season to Andrew Thomas. Would the Giants rather have Thomas or one of the 15 good rookie wideouts? After watching the Browns defense and knowing that Jedrick Wills is a fine player, I bet they’d rather have some speed in the secondary.

Give me a guy who can score or prevent touchdowns early in the draft every day of the week. Plus, I’d be comfortable paying Trent Williams. David Bakhtiari is PFF’s highest-graded tackle, and he was selected in the fourth round. In PFF’s top-5 offensive tackle grades, you have a fourth-rounder, a second-rounder, a first-rounder, a fourth-rounder, and a first-round pick.

As for your tanking idea, I tend to agree with Eagles center Jason Kelce, specifically on breeding a winning culture.

Kyle Shanahan is a QB creator. His offense is always a tier better than the QB. Bottom level guys (Mullens, Hoyer, Beathard) produce like NFL starters. Mid-level guys (Ryan, Schaub, Garropolo) become pro bowlers. The NFL knows this: Shanahan QBs never succeed elsewhere. - Dave

Dave has a point. While an argument can be made for the Mullens/Beathard duo producing like starters, we get where Dave is coming from. Which, to the bigger point of the entire quarterback argument, is the reason the 49ers should move on at quarterback.

Kyle Shanahan has convinced fans that there is not a better option than Garoppolo out there. Every day, we see arguments saying how Garoppolo got the team to the Super Bowl, ignoring what he did in the playoffs. My favorite argument is, “If you ignore the biggest parts of the biggest game, then he was really good.” Or the blind faith that the 49ers won’t be in this same position with a backup due to Jimmy’s injury at some point next year.

To me, among other reasons, that’s why the team will move on at quarterback. You have to ignore a lot of what’s happened to think Shanahan hasn’t been frustrated with the quarterback position since he’s taken over. Most of the arguments we see are not how a “football guy” would look at the said argument.

Watch the receiver's reactions this season. Then watch Shanahan’s. Everyone has been open all season, but, for whatever reason, it comes back to the offensive line, or the blame goes elsewhere. By no means does that mean anyone on offense doesn’t deserve any blame. The point is that a year from now when there is a different quarterback under center, and the 49ers are rolling on offense, the back and forth conversations about the quarterback are going to look silly when you see how a quarterback better than ‘mid-level’ elevate the talent on this offense.

Unpopular opinion: Kyle Shanahan’s play-calling is his biggest strength and biggest weakness. Too often, we see mistakes on the field in complex plays or poor game management because Kyle got cute. i.e., not running the ball in the Super Bowl - Austin

I’m not sure if I agree or disagree, but it’s a fascinating question that has some truth to it. We know that Kyle can scheme up an offense as good if not better than anyone in the NFL. We also know that his game management, specifically reading the game's flow, is questionable. It seems like there’s a gaffe in every two-minute drill, and it’s tied to Kyle.

Whether it’s knowing when to be aggressive or when to run or throw the ball, it feels like San Francisco has been on the wrong side more often than not. Perhaps that’s us being a “prisoner of the moment” and only remembering the negative plays. Shanahan has shown that he’s more willing to go for it on fourth down this season more than ever. That’s a positive, especially looking toward the future.

It feels like Shanahan gets in his way, and that’s why there are blunders. The issue is, how do you fix it? I’m sure the 49ers have internal discussions, or perhaps even some type of quality control coach, but Shanahan is going to have to learn from his experiences and continue to evolve as a coach.