As the NFL worlds meets up in Alabama for the Senior Bowl, all 32 of the league’s teams are preparing for what promises to be an eventful offseason.
Among the stories expected to dominate the NFL’s news cycle, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is slated to become a free agent in March.
In no way does this mean that Garoppolo will actually hit the free agent market. After leading his team to a 5-0 record in five starts to close out the season, San Francisco has made it clear that it will place the franchise tag on Garoppolo should a long-term deal not be reached.
It now looks like momentum is heading in the direction of the two sides actually coming to terms on a long-term solution. Just ask 49ers general manager John Lynch.
“Now the challenge is getting Jimmy signed. We’re working hard toward that. We’ll see,” Lynch told NFL Network on Wednesday (h/t NBC Sports Bay Area). “I think he wants to be with us, and we want him there. It makes too much sense for it not to happen. It’s just a matter of getting it done.”
San Francisco has in the past made it clear that the organization views Garoppolo to be its future at quarterback. The issue here is two-fold. First off, the young quarterback doesn’t have the sample size to compare to other signal callers that have signed extensions recently. After all, he boasts a grand total of seven career regular season starts.
There’s also no real reason for Garoppolo to take a below-market contract. He can easily decide to play under the franchise tag next season, only to find a huge pay day should the quarterback prove he’s as good as he looked in 2017.
Despite all of this, it sure looks like things are pointing in the right direction. And as Lynch said, “it’s just a matter of getting it done.”