The 49ers did a masterful job of keeping their No. 3 overall choice a secret until the moment NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced the selection of Trey Lance. The 49ers are attempting to do the same with the announcement of their starting quarterback ahead of the Sept. 12 season opener.
49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said Wednesday he is not undecided about his starter, though he couched it by noting the opener is 18 days away.
“I’ve got a pretty good idea, yeah,” Shanahan said, via David Bonilla of 49erswebzone.com. “I’ve always had a pretty good idea, but there’s lots of days between now and then, at every position.”
Shanahan publicly has never wavered from a plan to play veteran Jimmy Garoppolo, so it would appear Lance will begin the season on the bench. But Shanahan isn’t saying for certain.
“What do you gain by naming it? There would be only one reason I can think of by naming [the starter] that would help, and it would be to end those questions,” Shanahan said. “If you can give me another reason that’s a big advantage, that helps our team, affects anything that has to do with us, then I will name it, but I don’t think it does.
“I know you guys want an answer and stuff, which is fine. I get the suspense of it, but I’m not just going to answer it to end you guys’ suspense. I’m trying to get you more clicks.”
Shanahan was asked what goes into his quarterback decision.
“I could talk for six days on that,” Shanahan said. “It’s about a quarterback giving us the best chance to win, and you don’t just throw guys out (there) just because of a skillset. You throw guys out because of how they work in your offense, how they work for your team, how the other players tie to him, and what they’re ready to do.
“We do have a quarterback with a lot of experience who has played at a high level, and we’ve got a team, I think, that’s got some pretty good experience, that has the capability of playing at a high level. So you’re trying to figure out how our 47 guys now, on game day, can play at the highest level possible, and whether they’re starting, whether they’re coming in. There’s so much that goes into it. That’s why you will never get a straight answer from me.”
The 49ers played in Super Bowl LIV two seasons ago. They were hurt by injuries last season, and believe with those players returning they are ready to compete for a title this season. History says Garoppolo gives the 49ers the best chance to accomplish that, considering a rookie quarterback has never led his team to the Super Bowl.