PHOENIX — San Francisco 49ers receiver Deebo Samuel is not one to speculate on the 49ers’ current quarterback situation.
‘That’s not my call. I don’t too much speak on who is going to be the starter,’ Samuel told USA TODAY Sports at Super Bowl 57 Radio Row at the Phoenix Convention Center.
But there is one thing he knows for sure: ‘Losing Jimmy (Garoppolo) is pretty big.’
Samuel said 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan informed the team that Garoppolo will not return as the veteran is headed for unrestricted free agency after injuring his foot in Week 13. He didn’t play for San Francisco again the remainder of the season.
‘Kyle came out and said there’s no scenario where Jimmy will come back,’ Samuel said. ‘Being around Jimmy for four years and being around the league for the last four years, you see a lot. People come in, people leave, people get cut. Not only just Jimmy, we have a few free agents on our team, which no team is going to look exactly the same. But losing Jimmy is pretty big.’
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When asked where he thinks Garoppolo will land, Samuel said the Indianapolis Colts.
JIMMY G: Kyle Shanahan sees no scenario where Jimmy Garoppolo is back with 49ers
Samuel said both Trey Lance and Brock Purdy are fully capable of leading the team and are ‘unique’ in their own way.
‘What makes Trey so special is … he can use his feet. He is kind of that dual threat quarterback. He can put that fear in you running,’ Samuel said. ‘What makes Purdy so special is that he’s so decisive. He’s poised and he’s not afraid to mess up … Purdy can move around a little bit too.’
Samuel added: ‘It’s going to be a competitive match and the coach is going to make the best decision for the team.’
The 49ers season ended with a 31-7 NFC Championship loss to the Philadelphia Eagles after Purdy and backup quarterback Josh Johnson were both injured.
‘It hurts losing that game, but it didn’t hurt as bad as it should if that makes sense,’ Samuel said. ‘What were you supposed to do in a moment like that. We didn’t want our season to end that way. If anything, we wanted to put up a fight instead of not having a chance.’