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Flacco the latest 49ers backup QB option to sign elsewhere

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Joe Flacco

Joe Flacco?

No Flacco.

And that should be quite all right with the 49ers. Their search for a new backup quarterback continues.

Flacco never seemed to make much sense for a team that placed a priority on upgrading the depth chart behind presumptive starter Jimmy Garoppolo. But the 49ers still brought Flacco to Santa Clara last week for a visit.

Flacco, 36, on Tuesday agreed to a one-year contract with the Philadelphia Eagles. It is difficult to say how much the 49ers pursued him, but the organization should be just fine without him.

After being a starter with the Baltimore Ravens for 11 seasons, Flacco will be moving to Philadelphia after one season apiece with Denver and the New York Jets. He has officially reached the nomadic stage of his career.

The biggest question is why the 49ers either did not pursue strong enough or could not convince Mitchell Trubisky to sign with the club. Trubisky is young, athletic and, seemingly, a good fit for coach Kyle Shanahan’s system.

But Trubisky ended up with the Buffalo Bills on a low-money, one-year contract. Backup options Tyrod Taylor (Houston) and Jacoby Brissett (Miami) also signed elsewhere.

We can understand why the 49ers did not land Andy Dalton or Ryan Fitzpatrick. Those players went to Chicago and Washington, respectively, for starting opportunities.

The 49ers are running out of options.

Sure, a trade could still be made for Sam Darnold. The Jaguars could look to trade Gardner Minshew, though they will still need a backup for Trevor Lawrence.


The dream of acquiring Deshaun Watson remains alive. But that scenario has gotten a lot more complicated in the past week with the growing number of lawsuits alleging sexual misconduct. Any team interested in Watson is going to have to spend significant effort and time on off-the-field matters.

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Then, of course, is the draft.

The 49ers own the No. 12 pick. Lawrence and Zach Wilson will be long gone. Justin Fields, Mac Jones and Trey Lance figure to be in the next grouping of quarterbacks.

Does it make sense for the 49ers to invest their top pick in a quarterback? Does it make sense to target someone and move up to get him?

A rookie quarterback is not going to beat out Garoppolo. And with the possibility of another shortened offseason, it will be difficult enough to get a rookie prepared to serve as the No. 2.

General manager John Lynch said recently on the "Eye Test for Two" podcast that the 49ers need better options at the backup spot. Obviously, his words suggested he does not consider Nick Mullens or C.J. Beathard as legitimate options.

Currently, Garoppolo, Josh Rosen and Josh Johnson are the only quarterbacks under contract to the 49ers for the upcoming season. Johnson was out of the league before signing to the 49ers' practice squad in November.

Rosen, the No. 10 overall pick of the 2018 draft, spent most of last season on the practice squad of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In essence, he was the Bucs' No. 4 quarterback before the 49ers signed him in December after injuries to Garoppolo and Mullens.

Unless the 49ers end up making a fairly dramatic move, they will be no better off this season at quarterback.

Then, the team's hopes will once again rest on Garoppolo's ability to remain healthy and productive for the entire season.

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