Kyle Shanahan on whether Jimmy Garoppolo will remain the 49ers quarterback in Chicago

October 25, 2021

SANTA CLARA, Calif. – With the San Francisco 49ers’ four-game losing streak at four, the outside asks rookie quarterback Trey Lance to replace Jimmy Garoppolo.

When Lance could replace Garoppolo remains to be seen, but Niners coach Kyle Shanahan seemed more insecure about his situation as a quarterback Sunday night than at any time this season.

In the immediate aftermath of a 30-18 loss to the Indianapolis Colts that left the 49ers at 2-4, Shanahan was asked if Garoppolo will start next week against the Chicago Bears.

“I guess so,” Shanahan said. “I’ll watch this tape and see if the guys are healthy first.”

A few moments later, Shanahan was asked what his process would be in deciding who would be his starting quarterback in Chicago.

“I have a whole team to worry about,” Shanahan said. “I’m not just thinking about the quarterback situation right now. I will evaluate everything, see where our team is, see who gives us the best chance to beat Chicago and see what our options are … But we have a lot of things to do. sort out “.

By “seeing what our options are,” Shanahan was referring, of course, to the condition of Garoppolo and Lance, neither of whom have been in health in recent weeks.

Against the Colts, Garoppolo returned from the right calf injury he suffered against the Seattle Seahawks on October 3.

Lance started the Oct. 10 loss to the Arizona Cardinals in place of Garoppolo, but sprained his left knee in that game, rendering him inactive before the game Sunday night.

While Garoppolo was able to use the team’s week 6 bye to recover enough to start against Indianapolis, Shanahan isn’t sure when Lance will be ready. The 49ers had expected Lance’s injury to last for just a week or two, but he did not participate in practice last week and may still need time to recover before he can be active again, let alone get started.

Unfortunately, Garoppolo is still dealing with his own injuries. After completing 16 of 27 passes for 181 yards with a touchdown, a fumble and two interceptions Sunday night, Garoppolo acknowledged that his calf still bothered him throughout the game, though he said it wasn’t “hindering” him at all. .

“It stayed,” Garoppolo said. “I definitely felt it at times. But it is what it is. All the guys, all of us are playing with something right now. It’s that point in the season.”

In addition to the quarterback situation, the 49ers must find more answers to what ails them in a hurry. Sunday night’s loss was San Francisco’s fifth straight to the Colts dating back to 2005 and dropped the 49ers four and a half games behind Arizona in the NFC West division.

On a rainy and windy night at Levi’s Stadium, many of the same problems that have plagued the Niners all season continued to be problems. That is, an inability to convert on third down (1 of 11), a negative turnover differential of 2, and a continued bias for defensive pass interference penalties. The Niners received five penalties for defensive pass interference and the Colts accepted three of them for 97 yards, bringing San Francisco’s league-leading total to 11.

All of this added to another bleak locker room after the game and Shanahan acknowledged that he deserves the criticism that comes with his team’s disappointing start.

“You lose four games in a row, I’m the head coach of this team, I look forward to it and I deserve it,” Shanahan said.