As the San Francisco 49ers begin to prepare for the 2022 season, the future of quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is on everyone’s minds.
NFL insiders like Ian Rapoport have long reported the 49ers’ primary plan is to trade Garoppolo this offseason. After trading multiple first-round picks to take Trey Lance with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft, the narrative has been that San Francisco is moving forward with Lance.
While reports state that’s the case, the latest comments from 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch aren’t so direct. As far as the two are concerned, nothing is set in stone.
“If we knew exactly what was happening, we would have told Jimmy [Garoppolo,]” Shanahan said in the February 1 press conference, before later adding, “there’s a lot of good options there. A lot of cards are on the table.”
Shanahan also added that the team is excited for Lance as the team’s future QB, but that Garoppolo has earned the opportunity and respect from the 49ers.
“We have the ultimate respect for Jimmy,” Shanahan said. “And we’re excited about Trey… It won’t be easy, but I’m happy about that. It means you have the best scenario going.”
The 49ers are dealing with a “burden of riches” with two QBs they like. While they’ll be able to cash in one way or the other, it’s an obstacle to get there.
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Lynch Speaks on Jimmy G
Like Shanahan, Lynch had nothing but positive and vague things to say about Garoppolo and what comes next for him and the franchise.
The 49ers general manager said that Jimmy G made the most of an unorthodox quarterback situation and that he deserves credit for that.
“I think Jimmy Garoppolo deserves a ton of credit,” Lynch said. “The way he’s handled this situation. The way he competed and the way he welcomed Trey. It speaks volumes as to who he is.”
From Lynch’s perspective, the Niners have time to think it over. Considering Garoppolo is due $25 million next season per Spotrac and he’s been the preferred starter since 2017, there’s factors working for and against the San Francisco QB.
“We need that time to really start focusing on the implications of every move we’ll make.”
But with Jimmy G entering the final year of his contract, the 49ers’ best chance at value is trading him. Letting him stick around for another seaosn and his contract expiring doesn’t make much sense from a business perspective, so the other option that comes to mind is reworking or resigning Garoppolo to a different contract.
Garoppolo Speaks After Rams Game
After the 49ers’ 20-17 loss to the Los Angeles Rams in the NFC Championship, the Niners spoke to the media after the season-ending loss. Garoppolo explained that it hadn’t really hit him that he may never take the field again with his current teammates until he got to the locker room.
“They hit pretty hard in the locker room. I think in these next couple of days, it’ll start to settle in a little bit,” Garoppolo said. “Emotions ride after every game — win or loss. It’s just one of those things where you’ve got to be glad it happened and smile from it and think about the good things.”
Whether 49ers fans think Jimmy G underperformed or met expectations as San Francisco’s quarterback, the 29-year-old always made it clear that he loved the ride as a Niner.