John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Shanahan addressees the fan anxiety surrounding potential Mac Jones-to-49ers draft scenario

Apr 26, 2021 at 2:09 PM--

Mac Jones of Alabama is the favorite to be drafted at No. 3 overall by the San Francisco 49ers on Thursday. While the former Crimson Tide quarterback is not a popular choice among the fanbase, the decision ultimately falls on head coach Kyle Shanahan and what he feels is best for his offense.

There is a lot of fan anxiety surrounding the potential selection of Jones. Shanahan and general manager John Lynch spoke with reporters on Monday, and the head coach was asked about the concern from the fanbase.

"Everyone's excited to draft a quarterback," Shanahan said Monday during the team's pre-draft press conference. "If you would have been excited about one of these guys at 12, then you should be excited at three. It's about whether you get one. So, let us go through the process. We're going to get a good one.

"Yeah, I wish I could take that anxiety away from people, but that's because people get excited. ... We're going to add a quarterback to our team this year. I think the way our years have gone in the past few years, especially when Jimmy's gotten hurt, I think our fanbase agrees with that, and be happy we're going to solve that problem this year.

"I hope it's the one you want, but we'll see. Basically, whoever you want that day, make that judgment later. Let's see how they help our team out."

Lynch added that they can't really worry about fan anxiety and hopes there is some trust in their ability to make the right decision.

"What I can tell you is it has been an extremely thorough process," Lynch commented before noting that the rookie will enter the unique environment of having a talented roster around him and not necessarily needing to play right away.

Shanahan obviously didn't give any hints about who the 49ers plan to select on Thursday. However, he was asked specifically about Jones and what he likes about the Alabama product.

"I like that, him along with four other guys, I think is capable of being our NFL starting quarterback, and (we're) capable of winning with (him)," Shanahan said. "I think there's five guys there. That's been the biggest thing with all of this. Once you make an organizational decision that we need to get a starting quarterback, you look into all the options of how to get him, and you watch the ones in the NFL that you thought you had an option with, and then you look into the college, and where you think you can get them.

"I wanted to get into a spot where I knew we'd for sure get one, and hopefully, knowing the first two that are going, we could end up getting our favorite one. And I don't believe that would have been (the case) at 12."

Shanahan acknowledged that there will be a lot of pressure on whoever that quarterback ends up being, given how much draft capital the team surrendered to acquire him.

"Hopefully, we end up picking the best one," the coach added.

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