Lock: Trey Lance
Strong Bubble: Jimmy Garoppolo, Nate Sudfeld
Weak Bubble: Brock Purdy*
Long Shot: None
With each passing day quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo remains untraded, the chances of him hanging around on San Francisco’s 53-man roster increases.
Granted, the 49ers would still like to trade him this offseason, now likely waiting until another team’s starter suffers a serious injury or completely flames out by Week 1. But all indications to date signal the Niners aren’t simply going to trade Garoppolo for next to nothing, nor are they inclined to release him outright.
Don’t let this fool you, though. Should Garoppolo stay, he’d have to take both a reduced role in favor of Trey Lance, while also having to accept a drastically reduced pay from the scheduled earnings of $27 million this season.
Otherwise, San Francisco’s current salary cap situation wouldn’t afford it the ability to sign its own rookie draft class.
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Presumed No. 3 quarterback Nate Sudfeld also carries a fully guaranteed $2 million deal this season, so the chances of him going anywhere are slim.
Things do get interesting with the final pick of the 2022 NFL Draft, former Iowa State signal-caller, Brock Purdy, forever now called “Mr. Irrelevant.”
The ony way Purdy makes the 53-man roster is if two things happen (and they’d both have to happen): Garoppolo is moved before Week 1, and the rookie shows enough during camp and the preseason to justify using a roster spot on him.
Both are possible, yes. Just not wholly likely. If anything, Purdy is yet another late-round pick poised to begin his NFL career on the practice squad.