The 49ers likely will determine their starting quarterback for the 2023 NFL season with a battle between Brock Purdy and Trey Lance.
While the two young signal callers hope to come out as the starter, NBC Sports' Peter King believes the decision between the two players is easy for the 49ers to make.
"You think back at other times in history when coaches have had to make quarterback decisions and when I think about it and I think about this quarterback decision, I just don't think it's particularly difficult," King told NBC Sports Bay Area's Jennifer Lee Chan and Matt Maiocco on the latest "49ers Talk" from Super Bowl LVII's Radio Row in Phoenix.
"I think back to some very tough quarterback decisions. Like, I think Tom Brady-Drew Bledsoe in 2001. At the end of 2001, that was sort of a tough decision ... And so I think even though there's a shorter window or a shorter resume, I guess, to look at in this particular case, I think the way I look at it is the difference is that Trey Lance doesn't have any resume. He doesn't even have the eight games that Brock Purdy has ... But if I were them, I'd play Purdy."
Lance had his 2022 NFL season cut short after suffering a broken ankle against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 2. Meanwhile, Purdy took over under center against the Miami Dolphins in Week 13 after Jimmy Garoppolo suffered a season-ending broken foot injury.
In the first drive during the 2022 NFC Championship Game against the Philadelphia Eagles, Purdy tore his UCL, so both players are coming off injuries that could affect the quarterback battle.
However, what won't influence 49ers coach Kyle Shanhan's decision will be draft positioning. King expects the 43-year-old to decide who is the starter solely based on what happens on the field.
"Kyle is a cold-blooded guy," King continued. "In my opinion, let's just talk about decision-making, OK? I don't think he's going to make a sentimental decision, or I don't think he's going to go with Brock Purdy forever if he's stinking it up.
"And what I mean by cold-blooded is that just because they traded three ones to get in position to take Trey Lance, it's not going to give him any advantage in the quarterback derby in late July when training camp starts. In my opinion, in the NFL, regardless of how you come into the league, you have to earn what you get in the NFL; Kyle knows that. He's seen it forever."
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Purdy might be the favorite for how he performed to end the 2022 season, but he will need to show that he's the right guy to lead the 49ers once training camp starts.