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Sam Darnold: Winning’s the only thing that matters to me

Mike Florio and Chris Simms unpack the Niners reported move to sign Sam Darnold to a one-year deal and examine how he'll fit with Brock Purdy and Trey Lance.

Sam Darnold agreed to sign a one-year deal with the 49ers this week and he joins a quarterback depth chart that also includes Trey Lance and Brock Purdy.

Lance opened last season as the starter, but a broken ankle knocked him out of the lineup. Purdy took over after Jimmy Garoppolo went down with an injury and piloted the team to the NFC Championship Game before hurting his elbow in the loss to the Eagles. He’s expected to need six months to recover and that creates some uncertainty about who will be at quarterback when the season starts.

On Thursday, Darnold said that his focus is on “doing whatever I can to help this team win games” in whatever role 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan has for him in 2023.

“I think those are things that, with a good quarterback room, as long as we stick together, and we understand that we just got to work hard and continue to put the best foot forward for each other, that everything’s going to work out,” Darnold said, via “And I think at the end of the day, as long as we’re winning games, that’s the only thing that matters to me. As I continue to get to know Trey and Brock, and talking to people around the building about those guys, it seems to me that all they care about is winning as well. And obviously, as a competitor, you want to play, but at the end of the day, you got to do what’s right for the team. You leave those decisions up to Kyle. And we know that he’s going to put the best guy out there and do the right thing. We just need to go out there and win.”

The health of the other two quarterbacks will have a lot to do with any role Darnold plays in 2023, but his first order of business will be learning the offense well enough to take advantage of any opportunity that comes his way.