Steve Young told Brock Purdy that there were some notable similarities between their two contexts across two different 49ers eras.
Young was a lefty, played in (and then emerged from) the shadow of an NFL GOAT, quarterback Joe Montana, whereas Purdy is a righty and took over the job from his predecessor, now-Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. Purdy was selected with the final pick of the NFL Draft, whereas Young was acquired via a trade.
Those three elements alone are quite the contrast.
However, there are some similarities. Young was part of a massive quarterbacking controversy, one that ultimately resulted in Montana shipping off to another team. Purdy, too, competed to the point of Garoppolo leaving in free agency, while fellow quarterback Trey Lance, a top-three Niners draft pick, was traded off to the Dallas Cowboys.
It's the similarities that Young alluded to when he sat down with San Francisco's current starter recently.
Steve Young compares his situation with 49ers to that of Brock Purdy, says they're 'similarly situated'
Young sat down with Purdy just days before the 49ers' NFC divisional-round matchup against the Green Bay Packers, a team Young had difficulty beating in the postseason until one memorable 1999 Wild Card game at Candlestick Park.
In addition to pointing out how cool Purdy seems to act when under pressure, Young drew comparisons to the second-year pro's current situation and how it isn't unlike what he went through back with the Niners in the early 1990s.
"You mentioned Kyle [Shanahan] and his system," Young said to Purdy when discussing San Francisco's head coach. "I played with his dad. He was my favorite coach, Mike Shanahan. ... You and I are very similarly situated because Kyle and you, and me and Mike, we made great music together, his dad and I."
The elder Shanahan was San Francisco's offensive coordinator under then-head coach George Seifert from 1992 through 1994, which marked some of Young's most productive seasons as a pro and also included three consecutive trips to the NFC Championship game and one Super Bowl victory.
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Purdy, meanwhile, has developed quite the rapport with Kyle Shanahan, prompting many an analyst to believe that he views Shanahan's offense perfectly, and that translated into the quarterback setting a new franchise record in passing yards with 4,280.
"It feels like he calls plays knowing that you'll protect [Kyle]," Young added by pointing out Purdy not only executing within Shanahan's system but building upon it.
Perhaps that's why Purdy won out over Shanahan's other options, but unlike Young, Purdy wants to prove he won't take a few years to make it all the way to a Super Bowl (and win it).