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Kyle Shanahan Still Won't Name a Starting Quarterback for the Season Finale

I guess we'll find out Sunday.

Kyle Shanahan knows which quarterback will start for the 49ers this weekend. He just won't tell anyone.

Apparently, Shanahan thinks the 49ers need the element of surprise. Does that mean he has to start the rookie, Trey Lance, because the veteran, Jimmy Garoppolo, has a sprained thumb? Or does Shanahan plan to use both quarterbacks?

I guess we'll find out Sunday.

Here's a transcript of what he said Friday, courtesy of the 49ers public relations department.

Q: As far as Jimmy, we saw him throw early in practices and it is hard for us to see any difference with him. Did he have any setbacks from Tuesday to Friday? And what was your observation of watching him throw?

SHANAHAN: “He had a good week. Yeah, a good week of practice when he was in there. I feel good with where he is at right now.”

Q: If you're feeling good about where Jimmy is right now, would you want to take the leap and say he might be starting?


Q: What was Jimmy's mindset and just his demeanor all week of playing through the pain and how did QB Trey Lance look during the week?

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SHANAHAN: “Trey had a good week. I thought he was a little bit better this week than last week, so he keeps improving. I think everything with Jimmy was just trying to feel on what he was comfortable with, what he could push, what he couldn't push through. And just trying to figure out all the parts of the game that do go down on Sunday that you try to do your best to simulate it this week.”

Q: Are there throws that you want, I guess you didn't ask Jimmy to make this week, because they could potentially hurt his thumb and you'll just maybe wait until, I guess it would be game day to see if he is capable of making those?

SHANAHAN: “No, I know what we're doing. I just don't feel like telling you right now. Is that what your question is?”

Q: No, my question is are there throws, deep throws, throws that might be hard on his thumb that could either irritate his thumb that you say, ‘Hey, we're not going to have you do that in practice and maybe we'll just see if you can in warmups Sunday.’ See if we can let those fly?

SHANAHAN: “Yeah, possibly. I wish I had a mask on too, so I could hide my facial expressions.”

Q: Given Jimmy's week and the fact you said he's looked good. Have you already made your decision on who's starting Sunday or will you hold it over and then really decide Sunday morning?

SHANAHAN: “No, I'm not deciding Sunday morning. We don't have any practice left. I know where Jimmy's at today. I know where Trey's at. I know where our team is at and I feel pretty good about where we're at, so I'm excited to get to Sunday. I am really glad I don’t have any press conferences after today. So once I survive this, I'm done talking about it. So I think we'll be good after that, but I think you guys understand why you don't announce it. But regardless, especially with Trey playing last week, we’ve got two guys here with some experience that our team feels good with and we'll see how it plays out.”

Q: Do you relish keeping it vague more because it's Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay?

SHANAHAN: “No, it more has to do with their defense and just making [Los Angeles Rams defensive coordinator] Raheem [Morris] a little more uncomfortable. Not that Raheem ever gets uncomfortable, but it’s just not worth saying. There’s just no really point in it, except to avoid more of these press conferences, which this is my last one, so I feel like I can tough this one out.”