49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan joined The Athletic’s Bay Area Editor-in-Chief Tim Kawakami on The TK Show this week to discuss a wide range of topics surrounding the Niners as training camp approaches. Shanahan touched on rookie minicamp, contract discussions with Deebo Samuel, and (of course) the roster’s current top two quarterbacks: Jimmy Garoppolo and Trey Lance.
Late last week, a source with the team expressed frustration to ESPN NFL reporter Dianna Russini about continued questions surrounding the team’s starting quarterback. However, in Shanahan’s conversation with Kawakami, the 49ers top decision maker made it clear: Trey Lance is the team’s quarterback. Shanahan was highly complimentary of Garoppolo, saying, “We had an awesome run with Jimmy [Garoppolo]... I was so happy with how Jimmy played last year.” Still, he acknowledged, “This is something that we did last year knowing where we wanted to go with this salary cap and how you balance out a salary cap and how you balance out a roster.”
Shanahan has remained publically confident throughothe th offseason that the 49ers will find a trade partner for Garoppolo. He remained less explicit in that conviction during his conversation with Kawakami but did say, “Jimmy will be in a good spot, most likely somewhere else.”
Shanahan also addressed recent reports of Lance’s “arm fatigue,” saying that while the third overall pick in the 2021 draft did have some arm soreness, it was nothing unusual in Shanahan’s experience working with NFL quarterbacks. While the fanbase has been split between Garoppolo and Lance throughout the past year, the conversation seemed to show how excited Shanahan is to work with Lance, hopefully giving fans reason to be even more excited about the young quarterback.