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Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

49ers’ Brock Purdy: The competitor in me wanted to play vs. Rams

Jan 5, 2024 at 7:10 AM--

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If the decision solely belonged to Brock Purdy, he would be suited up and on the field with his teammates when the San Francisco 49ers host the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday. However, that decision falls on head coach Kyle Shanahan, who opted to sit his second-year starting quarterback in the team's regular-season finale.

The outcome of the Week 18 NFC West clash won't affect San Francisco's playoff positioning, as the team has already secured the top seed in the NFC, earning a first-round bye and home-field advantage.

As for Purdy, he has already etched his name into the 49ers' record books, breaking the 23-year-old record for the most passing yards in a single season with 4,280. Still, mentally, it was tough for the young quarterback to wrap his mind around purposely missing a game.

"Just the initial conversation that we had, for me, I was like, This is all I know, is to prepare for the next game and get ready," Purdy said of his reaction to learning from head coach Kyle Shanahan that he would sit Week 18 out.

Participating in practice while knowing he wouldn't play on Sunday added an extra layer of difficulty for Purdy as he observed teammates gearing up to face the Rams.

"I'm practicing but obviously not getting the go for the game," Purdy shared. "So a little weird in that sense, but it's part of it. Obviously, we're doing what's best for the team and the organization, so always got to remember that and have that in mind.

"Yeah, just the competitor in me, obviously I want to play and compete all the time. But that's the case and the situation that we're in."

Purdy strives to approach this week like any other, mentally preparing as if he were playing. However, come game day, it will be Sam Darnold, not Purdy, on the football field.

When asked about his mindset, knowing he won't take a snap, Purdy stated, "This week, I've still gone about my process and stuff with the install with the plays and everything. I'm going to do my part to help out Sam and what I'm seeing on the sideline, just like what he's done all year for me.

"Yeah, I'll have the headset on and be listening to all the plays and stuff and still going through my process in terms of if I were out there, what would I be doing and how I'm seeing the game and stuff, and try to help out Sam as best as I can. So that's what I'll be doing."

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