Just hours before the San Francisco 49ers‘ playoff matchup with the Dallas Cowboys was set to take place, an unexpected report was dropped.
Speaking on NFL Gameday, NFL insider Ian Rapoport addressed one of the biggest storylines in the 49ers universe: what is coming after the season in the 49ers QB room?
Jimmy Garoppolo has started the majority of the season after Trey Lance was taken with the third overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. In the time since, most signs have pointed to Garoppolo being traded after this year as Lance develops. Rapoport’s latest update says that is still the idea in San Francisco.
“My understanding is that the 49ers are still committed to first-round pick Trey Lance as their starter moving forward,” Rapoport said. “They are expected to explore trade options for Garoppolo, who really seems to be soaking it in and savoring this moment.”
The NFL insider also mentions Garoppolo’s comments earlier in the week in which the QB said, “this might be it” in terms of his time in San Francisco.
A lot can still happen between now and the offseason, but it seems like the 49ers are committed to their plan. But if the 49ers make another run to the Super Bowl, it will be interesting to see if that commitment is tested.
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Colin Cowherd Credits Jimmy G in 49ers-Cowboys Prediction
As the national media turned their attention to the 49ers and Cowboys’ Wild Card matchup, Garoppolo was a key factor for picks. Whether they had the 49ers or Cowboys winning, Garoppolo playing poor or well seems to be a deciding factor.
Colin Cowherd was conflicted when picking the game, but the FS1 personality went with the Niners because of their offense.
“I went back and forth [on the pick],” Cowherd said. “I gotta go with my initial instinct. I’m taking San Francisco and the points and the upset win. Listen, the road team has won 10 of 14 Wild Card games over the last three years. It’s the majority… And the offense for San Francisco leads the NFL—huge stat—yards per play, 6.1. The 49ers offense is the hottest it’s been all year. Three of the last four games, 150 yards rushing plus.”
Then he took aim at critics of Jimmy G.
“Oh, by the way, all you Jimmy Garoppolo haters, it’s insane… Here are the numbers post-Thanksgiving for Jimmy Garoppolo. Since Week 9, second in the league in completion percentage, first in passing yards per attempt, first in big passing plays.
Kyle Shanahan Credits Garoppolo
49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan spoke to local media a few times this week, and Garoppolo’s play came up just about each time. In the context of Garoppolo’s key passes but slow start in Week 18’s 27-24 comeback win over the Los Angeles Rams, the Niners HC knows Jimmy G makes mistakes, but he also responds the way a coach wants to see, per 49ers Webzone.
“Honestly, no differences than when he throws an interception. When you let that ball rip and you’re not scared of failing, things don’t always go perfect. And you watch a lot of good quarterbacks in this league and some do a really good job of never having picks, which is very rare. But even look at some of the great ones, they’re going to get some interceptions, they’re aggressive with it. Sometimes when they’re like that, you can keep both teams in the game, but usually they get you over the hump if you keep swinging. And that’s how Jimmy’s always been, sometimes it’s better than others, but when you throw the ball like that and if you’re not scared to fail, sometimes that stuff happens.”
The plan has been to ride with Garoppolo this season, and the 49ers have not falted. Now, they’ll see if Jimmy G has the capability to help them on one last playoff run.