Joe Montana has never been the warm-and-cuddly type. The legendary NFL quarterback, arguably the greatest to ever do it, reaffirmed that when describing his chilly relationship with Jimmy Garoppolo.
Montana, a three-time Super Bowl MVP with the San Francisco 49ers, told The Mercury News that he hasn’t worked out with Garoppolo and “stays away” from the 49ers practice facility. He doesn’t want to interfere, preferring to let the franchise’s new signal-caller create his own legacy in the Bay Area.
“No, I stay away from there,” Montana told Cam Inman. “I’ve been there, done that and have moved on with my investment fund.”
The Hall-of-Fame quarterback was visiting Pebble Beach last weekend for the U.S. Open where he was serving as the tournament’s honorary ambassador. He showed up in a sling on his throwing shoulder as he continues to battle complications from replacement surgery. Montana has already endured multiple follow-up surgeries to treat an infection, according to The Mercury News.
“I could live with a lot of it, but then I got to where I couldn’t lift my arm past my shoulder, so I decided to do something about it,” Montana told the newspaper. “I’d be OK if I didn’t have this stupid thing. You have to wear it 24/7. Shaking hands is not the problem. You have to sleep with this on.”
This isn’t the first time Montana has been cautious about embracing the 49ers’ new franchise quarterback. He warned fans in San Francisco to wait and see how Garoppolo has performed once he has a full 16-game slate under his belt. Garoppolo has only started eight games for the team. Although he has gone 6-2 in those starts, it’s an incredibly tiny sample size to judge someone.
Follow the Heavy Philadelphia Eagles page for the latest breaking news, rumors and content!
“He’s been anointed the quarterback of that franchise, sure — especially after what they’re paying him,” Montana told Sports Illustrated. “But, on the other hand, he’s played five games. Everybody is so excited in the Bay Area that he’s there and rightfully because he finished the year on a good note. I just want to see 16 games, see him get through some of that. You don’t have to pump the brakes, just take your foot off the gas.”
Playing in San Francisco, in the hauntingly large shadow of Montana, is no easy chore. He is universally regarded as the greatest quarterback in the history of the NFL, aside from those that believe that torch has been tossed to the Patriots’ Tom Brady.
Montana went 4-for-4 in Super Bowls and has no interceptions against 11 touchdowns, while Brady’s record is 6-3 in Super Bowls and he has six interceptions against 18 touchdowns. Of course, it should be noted that Brady has reached nine Super Bowls in 17 seasons. It’s like comparing chocolate and peanut butter, either one is great.
This a heated debate that will rage on until the end of time. They will no doubt go down as the two greatest quarterbacks in NFL history — at least until Patrick Mahomes wins a couple Super Bowls.