Brock Purdy may play football as a veteran, but he’s still only 23 years old and just finished his second training camp. He’s still learning important lessons about life in the NFL.
The trade of 49ers quarterback Trey Lance to the Dallas Cowboys on Friday was yet another glimpse into the league’s rough business side. Lance was selected #3 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft to be the franchise’s answer under center for the next decade and up, only to start four games over two years and be sent out of town.
It didn’t work out with Lance in the Bay. NFL teams are totally impatient.
“It kind of shows you, you’re in the NFL, the situations and how everything looks, the depth chart, everything can change overnight, just depending on what happens and situations and things,” Purdy said Friday night. After the 49ers pre-season finale against the Los Angeles Chargers.
“But for me, it’s like, How can I be present? How can I be where I am right now? I’m not trying to get caught up in saying, ‘Oh, it’s first, second, and third.'” [on the depth chart], whatever.’ The more you think about this kind of thing, the more you will consume it and affect the way you play.”
Purdy has rolled with the punches since being selected with the final pick of the 2022 NFL Draft. He impressed the 49ers front office enough last summer to surprisingly take the 53-man roster out of training camp. After two injuries, Purdy would lead the 49ers to eight straight wins and an NFC Championship Game appearance.
“At the end of the day, I’m just trying to do my job, do what I’m told as a midfielder,” Purdy said on Friday. “It’s not like I come here and go, well, I’m going to try to beat this guy, this guy. It has to do with nothing. It’s all about that, and that’s what I’ve been asked to do in life as a midfielder.
“I’ll come and do my job, and some situations happen. It’s too bad, Jimmy [Garoppolo] He got hurt, Trey got hurt, and things just happen that way. But at the same time, this is how the NFL is. Hence there are no hard feelings. I love Trey, and I want nothing but the best for him.”
Purdy’s level-headed style has earned the trust of General Manager John Lynch and Head Coach Kyle Shanahan. He was surprised when the 49ers traded Lance Friday night, but he took the news in stride and shared a moment with his former teammate in the locker room before a preseason game.
Several hours later, Purdy made San Francisco’s two-car offense, throwing for 73 yards on 5 of 9 passes. The 49ers were supposed to score in the first drive, but running back J.P. Mason fumbled in the end zone. Purdy took matters into his own hands on the second drive and crossed the goal line on a five-yard scramble.
The NFL train keeps moving. Better hold on tight.
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