REPORT: The 49ers Can’t Afford Their Quarterback Situation For 2024 Season

As a result of their dire cap space situation, the 49ers are expected to part ways with one of their quarterbacks this offseason. According to Over the Cap, the 49ers are heading into the offseason in the red by over $12 million.

That figure will complicate many of the 49ers’ roster decisions during free agency in March and beyond for the 2024 season. The 49ers have critical upcoming free agents to sign at wide receiver, defensive line, and offensive line positions.

Fortunately for the 49ers’ productivity in the win column, the team has Brock Purdy playing at a near MVP level on an extremely cheap rookie quarterback contract.

But Purdy’s play combined with the crunch from the salary cap means the 49ers are likely going to tinker with the quarterback room.

According to David Lombardi with The Athletic, backup Sam Darnold is expected to be a cap casualty for the upcoming season.

Darnold enjoyed a good training camp, which made Trey Lance expendable via trade. He attempted just 46 passes in the regular season, so don’t expect another team to offer Darnold a starting job.

But his work with Shanahan and 49ers quarterbacks coach Brian Griese, who’s developed a great reputation in just two seasons, might at least allow Darnold a shot with a team that’ll host a quarterback competition in 2024.

That’d likely come with a more lucrative offer than what the 49ers could muster because Darnold would be constrained to a backup role with them.

If Darnold leaves, expect the 49ers to sign another talented quarterback in need of some reputation repair. As the 49ers have learned, a high-upside backup is a luxury that can very quickly become a necessity.

If Darnold were to leave, Brandon Allen would be the only other quarterback on the roster besides Purdy. The 2021 sixth-round pick by the Jacksonville Jaguars signed a one-year deal with the 49ers last May. Allen didn’t play at all for the 49ers in the 2023 season or postseason.

Allen isn’t the type of number two quarterback Shanahan would want running his offense if he hopes to compete for a Super Bowl next season. The 49ers should think about drafting a quarterback in addition to signing a quarterback in free agency.



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