John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports


Joe Montana’s advice to 49ers Jimmy Garoppolo regarding Trey Lance: ‘Be patient with it’

Sep 24, 2021 at 2:30 PM--


Legendary San Francisco 49ers quarterback Joe Montana answered questions for Bleacher Report this week. Among the things Montana was asked was a question about how he dealt with having a backup quarterback waiting to take his job. Jimmy Garoppolo is the current starting quarterback for the 49ers, and has performed well in the first two games. But the team traded three first round draft picks for Trey Lance to eventually become the starter.

Montana, of course, dealt with this on both sides. First as the backup quarterback waiting to take the starting job from Steve DeBerg. And then as the starter trying to keep backup Steve Young on the bench.

Said Montana, "I had it from both ends. When I first got there, it was myself and Steve DeBerg, so I was being put into situations like Trey is being put into now." 49ers coach Bill Walsh would find certain spots to insert Montana into the game. Typically, these spots were opportunities for the young quarterback to succeed. In this way, Walsh set up Montana for success, and not failure, as many coaches have done.

Montana certainly understands what it's like to be in Lance's shoes. But he also knows what it's like to be in Garoppolo's shoes. And he has some valuable advice for the starting quarterback: be patient.

"The person it's toughest on is Jimmy," Montana said. "Trying not to let coming off the field affect you when you go back on the field is hard. Hopefully, he can find a way to be patient with it."

Few coaches are willing to insert a second quarterback into games, as many believe it disrupts the timing and continuity of the offense, and can hurt the starting quarterback's rhythm. But 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan seems willing to take that chance. He inserted Lance into the team's Week One game in Detroit on four occasions. Lance even threw his first touchdown pass in that game.

Much like Walsh, Shanahan will find spots to put Lance into the game. Part of this will be within the game plan, but part of it will be to get the rookie some much needed experience. And Garoppolo will just have to roll with it like he has so far.

Said Montana, "Jimmy is just gonna have to find a way to deal with it."
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