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Armando Salguero’s NFL QB Talk: Will Jimmy G Stay With Niners Next Year? Carson Wentz Doesn’t Care About Pass Yards; Mac Jones Gets Thanksgiving Right; Taylor Heinicke Doesn’t

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It is way, way, way too early to think about what the San Francisco 49ers are going to do about their quarterback situation in 2022.

They obviously drafted Trey Lance No. 3 overall for a reason, and the smart thinking has been Lance will take over as the starter next season.

But what if the team that is 5-5, has won two consecutive games, and is getting healthier — the Niners get Dee Ford and possibly Dre Greenlaw back this week — goes on a run with Jimmy Garoppolo at quarterback?

What if they advance deep into the playoffs?

Does general manager John Lynch try to bring Garoppolo back for the final season of his current contract in 2022?

Maybe, because no one is closing any doors right now.

Garoppolo isn’t.

“I mean, honestly with the possibilities, I try not to close any doors too early,” Jimmy G said Wednesday. “I don’t know. It’s one of those situations you’ve got to let it play out. We’ve got a lot going on with the season and everything right now. If you start thinking about those other things, you just get distracted, I think, but when we cross that bridge we’ll assess everything then.”

The assessment will have to include the 49ers, and they also haven’t definitively decided on a QB change for next season. Good idea, considering there’s still much work to do this season.

“I think there’s a chance for anything, but I think we made it pretty clear that Trey is our guy of the future, whenever that’ll happen,” coach Kyle Shanahan said. “But it was also nothing against Jimmy that we took him, but we do believe Trey will be our guy of the future.

“And like I said, I think it’ll be really hard if Jimmy’s on it for him to beat them out right away. So it is kind of going like that right now, and I’m not thinking much past that.”

Let’s play this out:

Garoppolo plays well through the remainder of this season, his value is only going to rise and with maybe a handful of quarterback-needy teams out there and not that many top draft prospects to fill every void, someone is going to offer a relatively high pick for Garoppolo — provided he agrees to a contract extension.

Trading Garoppolo gets the 49ers to their future quarterback and gives them a draft resource to improve the team.

Keeping Garoppolo only delays Lance from taking over a spot Shanahan, and the entire organization believe he’ll eventually win anyway.

So, yes, the door seems open. But barring Garoppolo playing at an MVP level that totally makes trading him seem unwise, the chances are more likely he finds himself elsewhere in 2022.

Yes, Washington is going to be QB shopping, but Heinicke is solid

While we’re on the subject of the coming quarterback roulette for the coming offseason, it’s likely the Washington Football Team is going to be among those teams looking to upgrade.

Taylor Heinicke is signed through 2022 and he’s had some good outings, including last week’s three-touchdown day against Carolina.

But he’d have to improve his game a few more notches to keep Washington from being in the quarterback market.

“I don’t think about it at all,” Heinicke said Wednesday. “I come in here day-to-day just trying to get better. So I feel like if I do that, things will work out for itself and we’ll go from there. But again, I’m just focused on winning games right now.”

Heinicke, with 15 TDs and 9 interceptions, is honestly looking like a fine bridge quarterback and backup. But if he keeps saying dumb things, I might have to find a way to re-write that last sentence.

And what dumb thing has he said lately?

Well, on Wednesday he said Thanksgiving is not highly appreciated as a holiday — I guess, kind of like him as a QB.

“Thanksgiving is an underrated holiday,” Heinicke said. “People kind of skip over it and look at Christmas, but Thanksgiving is awesome. You get to sit back, watch three primetime NFL games, couple of college games, eat some really good food and hang out with family.

“So, I think that’s kind of a lost deal in today’s world. And you know, I really enjoy it. My last Thanksgiving last year, I went up to Michigan and spent time with a lot of family, watched football, drank some beers and just hung out. So, I really appreciate Thanksgiving.”

Newsflash: Any holiday that gets a parade down New York’s 6th Avenue to kick off the day, gets the national sport to go off schedule and put on three games to fill the day, and gives most people a paid day off on a freaking Thursday is not underrated.

Nobody’s waking up on Thanksgiving Day and wondering, “When’s Christmas?”

We’re thinking, “When’s dinner?”

Just messing with you, Taylor.

Carson Wentz doesn’t mind passing for 106 yards

So the Indianapolis Colts are hosting the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers Sunday, and this is kind of a measuring stick game for Carson Wentz because the quarterback on the opposing team is pretty good.

But forgive Wentz if he’s not embracing the idea of out-dueling Tom Brady in a passing battle. The guy threw for 106 yards in a 45-15 rout of the Buffalo Bills last week, and he’d be perfectly happy seeing a repeat against Tampa.

“I’ll tell you, it’s a great feeling to be able to do that – to win a game and not have a lot asked of you,” Wentz told Indy reporters. “Obviously, just to turn around and give it to 28 [Jonathan Taylor] and him just do his thing time and time again. It was a lot of fun.

“Some people might say that was boring for me, but I had a lot of fun back there. I came in Monday morning feeling pretty good, which was nice. It’s definitely unique. Every game is different. Sometimes we’re going to have to throw for 400, sometimes we’re going to have to throw for 100.

“That’s just the way it goes, and we had a lot of fun getting it done out there on Sunday.”

You know what Wentz lacked, besides passing yards, in saying that?

Ego.

Well done.

Mac Jones thankful to be in right place

It’s Thanksgiving Day, OutKick.com has learned.

And so practically all the quarterbacks were asked Thanksgiving-related questions this week.

But of all the talk of pie and macaroni and cheese and all that, it was interesting when New England Patriots rookie quarterback Mac Jones was asked what he’s thankful for.

Jones, you must know, is having a good rookie season that is undoubtedly helped by the fact he’s on a very talented team with a very astute coaching staff that has allowed him to grow gradually and not asked him to do too much.

Jones, to his credit, has filled his role well — completing 70.2 percent of his passes while posting a 94.7 quarterback rating that is 16th in the league.

The impressive part is his awareness of the fact some of his success is a product of his environment as much as his talent and work ethic.

“I think just the situation that I’m in here is a big blessing,” Jones told reporters on Wednesday. “Just to be in a good organization with great people and a lot of great leaders and successful people, so there’s a lot we still have to do, but there’s a lot to be thankful for, and I’m obviously thankful for my family and people that I’m close with, and like I said, I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving.”

Follow on Twitter: @ArmandoSalguero

Written by Armando Salguero

Armando Salguero has covered the NFL since 1990 for the Palm Beach Post, Miami Herald and ESPN. He was a 2016 Associated Press Sports Editors Top 10 columnist. He is a Pro Football Hall of Fame selector and AP All-Pro team voter.

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