Lynch: Brock Purdy (elbow) 'has earned the right' to start for the 49ers in 2023

San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch said Monday that Brock Purdy (elbow) "has earned the right" to "take that first snap" in the 2023 NFL season.

What It Means:

Purdy shocked the league with his breakout 2022 performance, helping to steer the 49ers to an NFC Championship game before suffering a brutal elbow injury at the start of the contest. The former seventh-round pick will likely miss the entire offseason as he rehabs from his injury, but Lynch's comments would position Purdy ahead of teammate Trey Lance (ankle) for the team's starting quarterback gig. Lance operated as the 49ers' starter to open the 2022 season, but his own ankle injury opened the door for both Jimmy Garoppolo and Purdy to make starts. It would seem that Purdy currently has the edge to win the starting job in 2023 despite Lance's lofty draft capital, but it will be essential to monitor both quarterbacks' health heading into the season.

The 49ers finished the season on a 5-0 tear with Purdy under center, and clawed their way into the NFC Championship game off the back of their top notch defense, strong running game, and Purdy's elite 8.6 adjusted yards per pass attempt (which would have ranked second in the league last season). The team will have some difficult decisions to make this offseason, but Lynch's comments seem to imply that Purdy is currently in the lead for the starting job.