At this point in the offseason, “no news is good news” rules the day. It means no 49er has broken any of his precious bodily parts or been arrested for some type of bad behavior.
There’s been quite a bit of speculation about whether Trey Lance or Jimmy Garoppolo will win the starter’s job when the season opens. But Lance hasn’t played in nearly two years and also has to learn Kyle Shanahan‘s rather massive playbook, so it seems obvious to me that Garoppolo will open as the starter.
I would expect the team to use Lance much like New Orleans used Tasom Hill. They’ll work him in with specialty plays, probably for short yardage downs and plays near the goal line.
Other guys of interest in training camp and preseason are the massive new OG Aaron Banks, the two new RBs Trey Sermon and Elijah Mitchell, and the 3rd round CB Ambry Thomas.
Of this group, I’d expect the RBs to contribute quickly this year, because Shanahan has a green thumb when it comes to RBs. The CB will get a lot of play, too, since the team is a little thin at that position. Banks could struggle, though, much like Javon Kinlaw struggled last year. He’s gotten by on his biglyness through high school and college, but the NFL is different. He’ll need to learn technique in order to succeed in the pros.
This will be an interesting training camp and preseason, unlike most years where everything is locked up and there’s very little drama during the month of August. I dare say we’ll all be watching the exhibition games with far more attention than we usually do.