So far, San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and GM John Lynch have remained adamant Jimmy Garoppolo will be their quarterback this upcoming season. And no, it doesn’t appear to be a smokescreen at the moment.
When the Niners acquired the No. 3 overall pick in this year’s draft last week, many people believed they would use it on a Garoppolo replacement. In the days since, Shanahan has refuted such a notion.
San Francisco’s front office is excited about having a quarterback room led by a veteran Garoppolo with a rookie waiting in the shadows.
“We’ve got a guy in here we know we can win with, a guy that our players love, that we love,” Shanahan said of Garoppolo on Tuesday, via the Mercury News. “We’re excited to have him this year, and we’re excited to have a hell of a quarterback right behind him, learning for when the time’s his.”
The Niners’ biggest concern surrounding Garoppolo apparently has nothing to do with his on-field play, but his inability to avoid the injury bug. In his four years with the organization, Garoppolo has played just one full season (2019).
“It’s not like we’re giving up on Jimmy because he can’t play or anything. Jimmy can play,” Shanahan continued. “He only got to do it one year. We also like the person, too. We also know we can’t go through a year of what’s happened two of the last three years. (Garoppolo’s injuries cost him 23 of 48 games.) That’s something we have to protect the organization with.”
From the sounds of it, the 49ers aren’t ready to give up on Garoppolo just yet, which is probably the appropriate strategy.
When healthy, Garoppolo is capable of leading San Francisco on a deep postseason run. That’s a tall task for a rookie.