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Shanahan: Lance could 'regain' 49ers QB job with Purdy sidelined

Thearon W. Henderson / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Brock Purdy might be penciled in as the San Francisco 49ers' starting quarterback, but that doesn't mean Trey Lance is out of the running yet.

49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said Tuesday that Lance has "a chance to regain" the starting job with Purdy sidelined following offseason elbow surgery, according to The Athletic's David Lombardi.

Purdy's recovery is expected to take anywhere from six-to-eight months, though Shanahan said the team will have more clarity around the three-month mark, per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Shanahan offered a timeline of Weeks 1-4 for a potential return.

Lance is also coming back from an ankle injury that ended his 2022 campaign after two starts. He'll be joined by free-agent signing Sam Darnold in the quarterback room while Purdy rehabs his injury.

Shanahan added that he expects Lance and Darnold to both get first-team reps this offseason.

General manager John Lynch said Monday that Purdy figured to be the club's starter heading into the 2023 season. The 2022 seventh-rounder took the league by storm last year, throwing for 16 touchdowns to four interceptions while also winning his first seven starts (including playoffs) before getting hurt in the NFC Championship Game.

The 49ers traded up to No. 3 overall in 2021 to select Lance with the hopes he would be their future franchise quarterback. However, he has started just four career games and has thrown for five touchdowns to three interceptions.

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