Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo was seemingly on the way out of the Bay Area until he and the San Francisco 49ers agreed to his return — this time around, with a restructured contract to operate as second-year QB Trey Lance’s backup.
Having been in Lance’s shoes, retired Niners QB Steve Young spoke on the Lance-Garoppolo-49ers saga.
Zeroing in on Garoppolo — who had the more volatile offseason of the three — throughout his discussion with The Mercury News, Young examined the failed attempt to trade the veteran QB and how a fall from grace should inspire Jimmy G to change the narrative that kept him from finding a new team.
“If I’m Jimmy, I just got punched in the face,” Young said. “I think Jimmy must be shocked because when he (has a 33-14 record as a starter) and we know that Kyle (Shanahan), for whatever reason, has chosen away from Jimmy, he’s not interested in Jimmy as a starter.”
“This is the quarterback world. If you are a starting quarterback, you would have found a job. So you’ve got to do something to change the narrative, and maybe somebody gets hurt and then there’s (a market),” Young added.
Several teams were reportedly interested in trading for Jimmy G, but the asking price by SF appeared to be that of a starter’s — which no one deemed worth paying for the 30-year-old.
Young backed Jimmy as a positive influence on Lance as the third-overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft prepares to assume the full-time starting role for the Niners’ offense.
“In some ways, Jimmy being there, holds your own feet to the fire that can be productive,” he added. “It depends how he takes it in. It seems he takes in productively, and it can be thought in of the positive.”
As big of a project QB as Trey Lance is, his superior physical attributes and an overall higher ceiling than Jimmy G makes him an enticing prospect worth watching unravel with coach Shanahan at the helm of the offense.
“It helps because Jimmy is not a toxic personality, and if Trey needs help, he can ask him,” Young said.
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