The plot line around the quarterback position for the San Francisco 49ers resembles a soap opera.
Jimmy Garoppolo is the veteran who is picking up a big paycheck.
He has adjusted well to the competition for his job from rookie Trey Lance.
The 49ers traded up to select Lance as the No. 3 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
He is obviously the quarterback of the future.
When does the future start?
Given the fact that head coach Kyle Shanahan has not named Garoppolo the starter for Week 1 yet, many wonder if Lance could sweep in and take the job immediately.
Anything is possible.
No one can read Shanahan’s mind, but it seems like starting Jimmy G is the rational (and imminent) choice.
Why isn’t he making that decision public?
Many have viable theories including the Good Morning Football crew.
What do you think of Kyle Shanahan's handling of 49ers QB competition?
— GMFB (@gmfb) August 24, 2021
Here are a couple of possible reasons beyond what the GMFB hosts suggested..
2. He Doesn’t Want Jimmy G To Be Comfortable
Honestly, Garoppolo puts on a good game face because the man cannot be comfortable with all of this talk about who has his job when he still technically has it.
Shanahan’s offseason moves to get Lance were intended to make Garoppolo work harder and get better.
Calling the quarterback competition off prematurely may mean that Shanahan does not get the best work from the veteran.
Work ethic does not appear to be Garoppolo’s problem; staying healthy is a big factor.
He has worked hard and played well in the preseason.
#49ers HC Kyle Shanahan said after tonight’s game that Jimmy Garoppolo remains the clear starter at QB.
When asked if he can name Garoppolo as the Week 1 starter, Shanahan declined. “I’m not making that announcement. Nice try, though.”
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) August 23, 2021
1. He Is Not Sure If Jimmy G Is The Starter
This could be the real reason.
Is Shanahan wavering?
Maybe he is.
"There are some things that Trey Lance does that we are not going to show in August." – Kyle Shanahan
— Getty (@ItzGetty) August 24, 2021
The 49ers went all in on Lance while letting Justin Fields and Mac Jones pass them by.
Lance is the most inexperienced of the five quarterbacks in the 2021 NFL Draft.
He played 19 career college games in three seasons at North Dakota State.
That is barely the equivalent of one NFL season.
He only threw one interception in his college career which implies he didn’t see much adversity.
None of this stopped Shanahan from drafting him.
Maybe it will not stop him from making his second bold decision in the last six months and name Lance the starter.
What Else Is Shanahan Saying?
Coach Shanahan has noticed that Lance is dealing with the adversity and difficult transition from college to NFL quarterback very well.
“I know it got him down pretty bad. But to watch him go out there and recover was nice for me to see. I haven’t seen him have to play through too much stuff like that watching all of his college tape.”
Shanahan has consistently said he is in no hurry to name a starting quarterback but promised to do it before September 12 when the 49ers play the Detroit Lions.
Kyle Shanahan says he’s not yet ready to name a starting QB for Week 1.
— Matt Maiocco (@MaioccoNBCS) August 23, 2021
On August 23, when pressed on the specific date he will make the announcement, Shanahan said:
“Whenever I feel like it. (When?) It’s hard for me to give a date. It’s based on when we know and when we feel like naming it. I promise it will be that Sunday. ”
Who knows what Shanahan will do?
The Lions would like to know as would the rest of us.