Since Trey Lance was drafted on April 29th, the 49ers’ fan base has been split into two factions: Team Jimmy and Team Trey. Unfortunately, as the comments on this website and elsewhere can prove, things have gotten downright ugly sometimes. In today’s Niners Nation Oh, Hey There podcast, Javier Vega tried to bridge the divide, so to speak.
“If you’re on the Jimmy side, cool,” Javier Vega said, “If you’re on the Trey Lance side - I’m on the 49ers side. I’m in the middle. I don’t care. The name on the front [of the jersey] is what matters to me.”
I don’t think that’s the norm for most 49ers fans. I admit I’ve fallen to the Dark Side myself. Since he was picked in April, I’ve made no secret of the fact that I think the best thing for the 49ers to do is rip the band-aid off and start the rookie from day one. That’s the outcome I’m rooting for, but that shouldn’t supersede rooting for the team as a whole.
Things shouldn’t get to a place when people are actively rooting against Jimmy Garoppolo just to see Trey Lance and vice versa. Ultimately, what should matter to the fans is whether the team is scoring points and winning games. Unfortunately, with so much time between the draft and the start of the regular season, it can be easy to forget that sometimes.
Now, does the same apply to the 49ers themselves? Are they truly as uninterested in the quarterback choice as they’ve made it seem from behind a microphone? If anything, I think I could believe that the guys on defense have less of a preference as to who gets the call under center. Their primary focus is preventing the other offense from moving the ball and scoring points, and that doesn’t change no matter who is playing quarterback. Can the same be said of the offense?
Aaron Rodgers famously complained this offseason that he wants a say on decisions that directly affect his job. Certainly, Brandon Aiyuk, Deebo Samuel, George Kittle, and others would acknowledge that the quarterback directly affects their performance, so do they have a preference by now?
Perhaps many are waiting until Saturday to firm up their choice once Lance performs in real game action. Regardless, Kyle Shanahan has a delicate tightrope to walk handling this situation. Like Indiana Jones, he must choose wisely. As the correct choice will bring the team life, the wrong choice will take it from them.
Other topics in today’s episode
- How much will Trey Lance play on Saturday?
- Trent Sherfield: Legit WR or mere training camp darling?
- Could the 49ers trade for another cornerback before the year starts?