So far, the 2023 NFL season has gone according to plan for the San Francisco 49ers. They hold a 3-0 record, and each of their three wins has been fairly convincing on both sides of the football.
Brock Purdy, the last player chosen in last year’s draft, is continuing to prove the naysayers wrong by giving the team a steady, productive hand at quarterback, and yet San Francisco seems to have plenty of room for improvement.
Behind Purdy is Sam Darnold, now in his sixth season out of the University of Southern California. The 49ers made the decision to make him their QB2 rather than Trey Lance, who they had previously wanted to make into their signal-caller of the future before he suffered a season-ending injury last year and paved the way for Purdy’s emergence.
Joe Tansey of Bleacher Report feels the Niners could start to receive some offers for Darnold from other teams.
“The string of injuries and poor performances at quarterback in 2023 could lead the 49ers receiving calls for Sam Darnold at some point,” wrote Tansey.
“Darnold is not going back to the New York Jets, the team with the most pressing need at quarterback entering Week 4, but one or two other squads could be interested.”
Tansey then mentioned one specific team that may want to try to acquire Darnold.
“The Chicago Bears seem like a team who could reach out if Justin Fields continues to struggle,” Tansey continued. “The list of teams with a quarterback need will continue to grow as the season goes on.”
Prior to this season, Darnold had started all but one of his 56 games. He has been considered a disappointment since coming into the NFL in 2018 after he had impressed people in college.
In 58 career NFL games, he has a completion percentage of 59.7 percent and he has thrown 61 touchdown passes and 55 interceptions.
Trading him would seem to be a bad idea for the 49ers when one considers how hard they have been hit by the injury bug the last three seasons and in four of the last five campaigns. Last year, Lance went down with a severe ankle injury in Week 2, and his replacement, Jimmy Garoppolo, suffered a season-ending foot injury in Week 13, which is when Purdy filled in.
Alas, Purdy tore the UCL in his throwing elbow early in the NFC Championship Game. If that wasn’t bad enough, his replacement, Josh Johnson, then sustained a concussion, forcing Purdy to return and attempt to play despite being unable to throw the football.