The Facts: Trey Lance will ultimately replace Garoppolo as the 49ers starting quarterback. The question for Kyle Shanahan and the 49ers is when Lance will get the gig. Throughout the process, the Niners' brass has insisted the starting job is Garoppolo's. The unstated caveat to the insistence: Until/unless Jimmy G falters. Speaking to Peter King for Football Morning in America, Shanahan noted his belief that Garoppolo at his peak is better than Lance or any rookie. "It's not been as hard as you think," he said when asked when he might play Lance. "What I told Jimmy right when we made the trade is, 'I don't know any rookie who can come and beat you out if you're playing at his best self.'"
Diehards Line: Shanahan continued: "I didn't necessarily think he was there last year at training camp. Then he had the injuries and stuff. But right now, I see him playing well out here. If he can continue to go that way, that's great for Trey. That's great for our team. Then Trey can wait till he's at his best self, which doesn't happen overnight." As NFL.com suggests, perhaps the most interesting part of Shanahan's response is that he admits Garoppolo wasn't impressive last season even before injuries sideswiped the season, and the Niners eventually cratered. It's the opposite of what the San Francisco coaching staff has said of Jimmy G this offseason, glowing about how the QB has impressed. It appears the draft move has motivated Garoppolo, who is fighting to keep his job for as long as possible. Despite suggesting Jimmy G at his best will keep Lance on the bench, Shanahan also admitted anything could change in the coming weeks and months. "I truly don't know what's going to happen here," he said. Reports from 49ers camp suggest it's been an up-and-down learning process for Lance thus far, not surprising for any rookie, particularly a quarterback. ... We'll be watching for more.