The arrival of Sam Darnold to the Bay Area has added some backfield drama for the San Francisco 49ers, at least in the eyes of outsiders. When NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport seemingly tried to hype the possibility that Darnold could be the 2023 starter for the Niners over Trey Lance, he revealed that those from inside the organization made him hear it.
“When I said something like that there’s a very real chance that Darnold was gonna be the starter in Week 1. I got a lot of pushback…from people there [49ers]. ‘Why would you discount Trey Lance?’ I get it, but like Trey Lance..Whatever Trey Lance is going to be, we haven’t seen that,” Rapoport said during a recent appearance on The Pat McAfee Show.
The 49ers reached out to Ian Rapaport about his Darnold hype and for discounting Trey Lance. All of you freaking out about Darnold need to relax. As I’ve been saying. The 49ers believe in Trey Lance. At least enough to want to see what he can do. Now is their best opportunity. pic.twitter.com/O0yTsqmeyn
— Ryan G Hensley (@ryanghensley) May 8, 2023
It can be remembered that during the third day of the 2023 NFL Draft, Raoport also floated the idea that the 49ers should trade Trey Lance.
“To have the potential No. 3 overall pick on your roster be the potential third-string quarterback is awkward. And at some point, there is more value out there to trade him than keeping him.”
Trey Lance was pegged as the starter for the 49ers in 2022, but he suffered a season-ending lower-body injury that opened the door for Jimmy Garoppolo to take over his old role. Garoppolo would also then get injured, paving the way for Brock Purdy to get the nod as the team’s starter. The Niners had success with Purdy, but he also got injured in the offseason, leaving a chance for Darnold to eventually be the team’s 2023 starter.
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