Brock Purdy delivers strong showing at practice Thursday, could play Saturday

Aug 17, 2023, 3:00 PM | Updated: 5:18 pm

Brock Purdy #13 of the San Francisco 49ers works out during training camp at SAP Performance Facili...

SANTA CLARA, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 04: Brock Purdy #13 of the San Francisco 49ers works out during training camp at SAP Performance Facility on August 04, 2023 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

UPDATE: Kyle Shanahan told KNBR Thursday that quarterback Brock Purdy and the rest of the starters could play in Saturday’s preseason game against the Denver Broncos.

According to the AP’s Josh Dubow, the plan would be for the starters to play a series or two, before QB Sam Darnold & the backups take over for the rest of the first half. QB Trey Lance would then fill in for the remainder of the game.


After three weeks of training camp, the San Francisco 49ers have made it pretty clear that Brock Purdy is their guy at quarterback.

The former Mr. Irrelevant has rebounded well from offseason elbow surgery, being cleared for practice less than five months post-operation. Since then, he’s only gotten better, building on each practice with both his accuracy and processing abilities on full display.

One of Purdy’s best sessions of camp came Thursday, going 14-20 with no interceptions. By the end of the day, he took 27 reps in 11-on-11 drills. In comparison, Sam Darnold took 13 snaps, while Trey Lance had only four.

If anything has been made clear by the 49ers, it’s that Brock Purdy is back in the QB1 seat moving forward.

“Brock Star…We love him out there. That goes for all of our quarterbacks,” wide receiver Jauan Jennings said Thursday.

“He would have to melt in practice to lose [the starting quarterback job],” head coach Kyle Shanahan told Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated. “And Brock’s too good of a player to melt in practice.”

But while the team has full confidence in the second-year standout, his rehab back to game shape has had a few bumps along the way.

Brock Purdy has had a touch of the turnover bug, throwing 10 interceptions combined over the last few weeks. The QB has also had numerous near-INTs, where the ball slipped out of the defender’s grasp before he could secure it. The point is: Brock Purdy has shown a bit of rust in the month of August.

Despite the mistakes, Shanahan & the coaching staff are very encouraged by his progress from injury. The coach is particularly pleased with Purdy’s willingness to take shots downfield, excited by his lack of hesitation.

“I definitely like having interceptions a lot more in practice than in games. One thing Brock does is he lets it rip. He’s not worried about anything else. He’s especially not worried about people counting his interceptions at practice. That doesn’t mean they’re all right, but I do like him letting it rip,” Kyle Shanahan stated Wednesday.

San Francisco 49ers fans will have to wait a little longer to see him in game action though, as he’s likely to remain on the sideline for the team’s exhibition game with the Denver Broncos Saturday.

“I haven’t decided yet with all of the starters,” Shanahan said.

As for what could happen, another mixture of Trey Lance and Sam Darnold appears to be in the cards.

Last week, Lance got the start, playing the entirety of the first half before Darnold came in for the second half. Week 2 of the preseason will likely see their roles flipped, as the team continues to figure out who the backup QB is.

“Not set in stone,” Shanahan previously stated. “What I said last week, we want Trey to take a majority of the first half, so Sam could get [in first] next week. That’s what we’re planning on, but we’ll see how the next two practices go before we decide for sure.”

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