Rookie general manager John Lynch wants to replicate the front-office success of Denver’s John Elway, his good friend who was in Santa Clara on Wednesday for the 49ers’ joint practice with the Broncos.

But here’s one thing Lynch can’t do: Speak from experience, as Elway can, about the culture that existed when the franchise he’s overseeing was winning multiple Super Bowls.

With that in mind, Lynch invited two experts on the subject to address the 49ers on Monday. Jerry Rice and Steve Young.

“Denver, every day, gets to look at John Elway,” Lynch said. “And he’s a big part of their history. So why not embrace that? It’s something we’re doing and we’re going to continue to do.”

Among other topics, Lynch said Rice and Young talked to the players about the unity that existed during their five-Super-Bowl glory days.

And he referenced their words when asked how he would respond if a current player decided to protest during the national anthem, as quarterback Colin Kaepernick, safety Eric Reid and linebacker Eli Harold did with the 49ers last year. Reid and Harold, who remain with the team, have said they will stand for the anthem this season.

The subject remains relevant because Seattle defensive end Michael Bennett sat during the national anthem last week in response to racial unrest that was sparked by white supremacists in Charlottesville, Va.

Lynch said he thought such protests could be “divisive” but he would “always be respectful” of players who took such a stance.

Rice and Young “talked about the 49er way,” Lynch said. “I’ve always thought it’s one of the great things about this league. I think it’s a great beacon for the rest of culture in terms of the way it should be. You strive for a common goal, and you have unity. I think this game brings people together.

“So I think, partially, when I see (national anthem protests), I think that’s divisive. I understand that guys see things and they’re not happy. And they have that right. I think we’ll always respect peoples’ rights. That doesn’t mean I believe that. I believe that this game that should actually be celebrated for what it is. I think it’s a tremendous unifier for our country and for the way things should be.”

The 49ers, of course, didn’t sign Kaepernick after he opted out of the last season of his contract and he remains unsigned, with his protest last year certainly playing a role in his unemployment.

In February, when the 49ers were weighing their QB options, Lynch was asked if Kaepernick’s protest would be a factor in the team’s decision-making.

“It will be a football decision,” Lynch said. “But I think there are different layers to that. I think everything will be included in the decision. I’m not talking specifically about his stance, though. When you have a quarterback, the great ones are leaders of men. All those things will be taken into account.”

Instead of Kaepernick, the 49ers signed Brian Hoyer, 31, and Lynch has been pleasantly surprised by the journeyman’s offseason performance. Hoyer has played for six teams in his nine-year career, but he’s thrown 25 touchdowns and seven interceptions the past two seasons while posting a 93.7 passer rating.

On Wednesday, Hoyer continued his impressive training camp by unofficially completing 14 of 20 passes against the Broncos, who ranked fourth in team defense in 2016.

“We’ve said from the beginning, we want a franchise quarterback around here,” Lynch said. “And a lot of people are making assumptions as to what Brian’s role is. Is he a bridge — is he all those things? Our response to Brian and to everybody is he’s got the first crack at being that guy. I love the way he’s embracing that opportunity each and every day … I think he’s probably exceeded my expectations for how I thought he could play.”

The 49ers and Broncos will have their final joint practice before their preseason game Saturday night at Levi’s Stadium. Their extended get-together could also result in a trade prior to the regular season. Lynch acknowledged he’d already had such talks with Elway.

“This is a great opportunity to do that,” Lynch said. “So we did have some of those discussions … We get a chance for three days to look at some people we might be interested in. So you’re always doing that. I think they’re doing that as well. That’s another productive thing out of this week.”

Eric Branch is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: Twitter: @Eric_Branch

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