In life, they say timing is everything. In the NFL, doubly so. The 49ers are again sending Trey Lance to work with John Beck this offseason, and now, they again need a quarterback coach. It doesn’t take a matchmaker to see where this should be headed- but not so fast, my friend. There’s no need to walk before you crawl in this case.
There’s very little question about whether John Beck makes sense as the 49ers quarterbacks coach. He played in Kyle Shanahan’s system, and he was the man the team asked Trey Lance to work with before the draft. Clearly, the team likes and believes in what he teaches.
There’s only one problem with hiring John Beck to be Lance’s QB coach - the CBA. If the 49ers hired Beck today, they would have to find somebody else to send Lance to during the offseason because players aren’t allowed to have workouts with coaches until certain points in the league calendar. That means hiring Beck right now would actually take valuable practice time away from the duo this offseason.
Instead, the 49ers could work out a handshake deal with Beck now, where he agrees to take the job officially later in the offseason, once they’ve squeezed all the juice from that orange that they can. As long as Beck technically remains an independent quarterback coach, Lance can spend as much time with him as he wants without breaking any league rules. Of course, Beck would still be owed money for his time, but the team could factor all of that in the contract that he eventually signs down the road. Considering the prior relationship between Beck and Kyle Shanahan, it’s not inconceivable that such a deal could be worked out.
Admittedly, it’s not a perfect plan. With no official agreement in place, the 49ers would run the risk of Beck changing his mind or another team getting wind of the situation and offering him a boatload of cash to work for them immediately. There’s also the fact that this is kind of a
Patriots sketchy way to circumvent league rules. The team could be punished by the NFL if it could prove what happened (or likely even if it couldn’t, given how we’ve seen Roger Goodell hand out punishment at times).
The 49ers would have to make their peace with that. If they went down this road, however, and Beck did come on board as scheduled, Trey Lance would probably have the best possible chance to hit the ground running in 2022.
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