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Matt Barrows deciphers 49ers’ QB interest and why Mac Jones isn’t a lock at No. 3

© Gary Cosby Jr via Imagn Content Services, LLC

What should you make of all this quarterback talk? Perhaps the only clear thing, at this juncture, is that nothing is locked in. By all accounts, with Trevor Lawrence going No. 1 and Zach Wilson going No. 2, the 49ers are on the clock, and have yet to decide who their quarterback of the future is.

Matt Barrows of The Athletic joined the Tolbert, Krueger and Brooks show on Tuesday to discuss this nebulous quarterback situation. While he mentioned Adam Schefter’s comment about Jones likely being the pick and accepting Schefter’s credibility, he said agents play a massive part in the talk surrounding quarterbacks.

But Barrows came closer in line with his boss and colleague at The Athletic, Tim Kawakami, who wrote Tuesday that he believes the 49ers will move off of Mac Jones and select Justin Fields.

In Barrows’ view, Mac Jones is basically the guy the 49ers would be just fine with; the guy they look at and say if Fields and Lance fail to impress us, he’s our safety school. But do they really want a safety school after trading three first-round picks and a third-rounder?

“I believe that Jones is the guy that convinced them that they could do this trade, that they realize that, okay bare minimum, you know, we’ve been able to assess Mac Jones, we know what Mac Jones is, we know what he can do,” Barrows said. “He’s the floor, the proverbial floor. And he gave them confidence to trade up in the draft. Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re gonna land on him.”

What Barrows pointed out is that the 49ers will attend Justin Fields’ second pro day on Wednesday and Lance’s second on Monday. They haven’t made up their mind and have a good relationship with John Beck, a former Shanahan quarterback in Washington who worked with Zach Wilson, Fields and now Lance.

“[Beck[ knows what a Shanahan quarterback is, or, more to the point, he knows what Shanahan wants out of his quarterback,” Barrows said. “So I don’t think it’s a done deal is my basic point. I do think that there’s an opportunity for Fields and for Lance, to move the 49ers off of their mark and that really starts tomorrow.

“You don’t want to overemphasize these pro days because you’re really not learning a whole lot, but the fact of the matter is Shanahan and Lynch are taking a private jet out there. They’ll do the same to go to Fargo next week, so, if they had settled on Mac Jones, they wouldn’t be doing this.”

This essentially confirms that the idea that the 49ers having settled on someone is anything but certain. The 49ers are evaluating their quarterback options (including with Mike Shanahan’s help, Barrows said), and are genuinely still going through the process.


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