SANTA CLARA — For some time after the 49ers selected Brock Purdy with the last pick of the 2022 NFL Draft, the quarterback had no idea what his head coach thought about him.
Literally no clue.
On Thursday, 49ers CEO and owner Jed York shared how very early on in the 2022 preseason, Kyle Shanahan opined that Purdy might be the best quarterback on the 49ers roster.
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"Honestly I didn't really know, ever," Purdy said with a laugh. "When I first got here I was obviously just trying to learn the playbook and compete every day on the field as hard as I could."
At the time, Shanahan worked with presumptive starter Trey Lance, who was coming back from foot and finger injuries. Jimmy Garoppolo was still on the roster and the club had also signed veteran Nate Sudfeld to a one-year deal to be the third quarterback.
"I was going through the preseason games, he wasn't really saying much," Purdy said. "And obviously he was trying to develop Trey as best he could and all that. We were all there for Trey and helping Trey out."
San Francisco 49ers
When final cuts were made at the end of the preseason, Brock Purdy claimed the third spot over Sudfeld which was a surprise to everyone outside the building with the veteran's contract being valued at $2.2 million.
"When the season sort of came around and I found out I made the team I was, 'Oh ok.' I think he respects the way I play and how I handle things," Purdy said. "That was really about it."
Purdy wasn't looking for compliments from his head coach, instead, keeping his head down, working on doing his absolute best on and off the field. When his number was called, Purdy was ready.
"I got my opportunity against Miami, and we sort of talked after that," Purdy said. "That's when he sort of started telling me, 'Hey, since you've been here, you've been doing everything right' and that kind of thing. That was really about it, though."
The young quarterback still has no expectations of accolades from his head coach and would prefer honesty in order to raise the level of his game as much as possible. But at least he now knows that Shanahan has been a believer since the start.