During the NFC Championship, the San Francisco 49ers ran out of quarterbacks and had their backs against the wall during their most important game of the year. After a season filled with quarterback injuries, head coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch expressed their support for the emergency quarterback rule to change.
The 49ers started the NFC title game game with rookie Brock Purdy, who came into the season as the third-stringer. After original starter Trey Lance was ruled out for the season in Week 2 with an ankle injury and next man up Jimmy Garoppolo went out in Week 13 with a broken foot, Purdy took over the offense. The last overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft suffered a torn UCL against the Eagles and was replaced by Josh Johnson, who exited in the third quarter with a concussion. The team then had to put an injured Purdy back behind center and rely on the running game, as No. 13 could not throw the ball more than a few yards.
After the NFC Championship quarterback crisis, it is no surprise that Shanahan would be in favor of dressing a starter, a backup and a third-string quarterback, where the third QB does not play unless the two in front of him are injured and does not count against the 46-player limit.
"Definitely would be in favor of it," Shanahan said Wednesday (via NFL.com). "We were scared to death when that rule ended, whatever many years ago that was. You kind of forget about it since you don't see anyone have to go through it, but then you get reminded of how quickly a football game is over once that happens. So I think that would be a very smart thing to have."
Lynch is also a fan of making some changes and commented that it would improve the game.
"I think it would be good for football," Lynch said. "You're always trying to develop these guys, but you're always weighing that, carrying three as opposed to their roster value of being able to host a full complement of position players at different positions. I think if the league just kind of gave you an out there, everybody would be forced to do it, you'd have more people in camps improving, I think it'd be good for football."
Running back Christian McCaffrey ended up being the emergency quarterback for the team, completing one pass in the 31-7 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.