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Jimmy Garoppolo talks uncertain future ahead of what could be final game with San Francisco 49ers

Vincent Frank

Veteran quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo entered Week 18’s matchup with the Los Angeles Rams knowing full well that it could have been his final game as a member of the San Francisco 49ers.

What followed was a comeback for the ages and an extension of Jimmg GQ’s career for at least one more game. Down 17-0 late in the second quarter and looking completely lost in a must-win game, Garoppolo led the 49ers back to a 27-24 overtime win.

By virtue of the win, San Francisco heads to Big D to take on the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Wild Card Playoffs Sunday afternoon.

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In meeting with the media on Wednesday, Garoppolo admitted that his uncertain future has weighed on him all season.

“It’s always in the back of your mind,” Garoppolo told reporters. “It has been in mine, really, the whole season. I knew what type of season it was, knew everything that was going on behind the scenes and what-not. It was a little different.”

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Jimmy Garoppolo’s future remains clouded ahead of NFL Playoffs

san francisco 49ers' jimmy garoppolo talks uncertain future
Jan 9, 2022; Inglewood, California, USA; San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10) celebrates as he leaves the field after defeating the Los Angeles Rams in the overtime period of the game at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Several months earlier, the 49ers exhausted two future first-round picks and a third-round selection to trade up for quarterback Trey Lance. You don’t trade that capital if you’re not expecting said quarterback to start sooner rather than later.

With Garoppolo injured in Week 17 (thumb), Lance came in helped the 49ers stay in the playoff race with a 23-7 win over the Houston Texans. That game saw the small-school product complete 16-of-23 passes while accumulating 280 total yards with two touchdowns. For some, that should have represented the start of “Trey Area” in Santa Clara.

In fact, many were calling for Garoppolo to be benched at halftime against the Rams last week before the veteran turned in a comeback for the ages.

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What does this mean moving forward for the Super Bowl quarterback? It’s as cloudy as ever.

On one hand, Garoppolo boasts a $26.91 million cap hit for next season. San Francisco can get out of that by saving north of $25 million. For his part, Lance’s cap hit is a mere $7.75 million. Financially and from a team-building standpoint, it makes sense for San Francisco to trade or release Garoppolo.

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All of this is complicated by the fact that these 49ers have had a ton more success with Garoppolo under center compared to other quarterbacks during the Kyle Shanahan era.

  • Record with Jimmy Garoppolo: 31-14
  • Record without Jimmy Garoppolo: 8-26

Those are some absolutely absurd splits right there.

Realistically, Garoppolo’s future could be dependent on what happens Sunday in Dallas and potentially moving forward in the playoffs.

Much like what we saw following the 49ers’ Super Bowl appearance in February of 2020, a deep playoff run would make it hard for San Francisco to move off Garoppolo. Remember, the team’s brass opted against chasing after Tom Brady a month after said Super Bowl appearance.

As for Garoppolo, he wants to keep this going as long as possible.

““These guys on this team, I love this team. I love the players. I love everything about it. It’s a good group to be around, a fun group. We want to keep this thing going for as long as we can now,” the quarterback said.

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