Jimmy Garoppolo's Reported Return to 49ers Stuns NFL Twitter, Draws Criticism

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVAugust 29, 2022

INGLEWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 30: Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers looks to pass the ball in the NFC Championship Game against the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium on January 30, 2022 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Jimmy Garoppolo will be a member of the San Francisco 49ers for the 2022 season after all.

While it was widely understood that San Francisco was moving on from the veteran quarterback and handing the offense over to Trey Lance—who it traded up to select with the No. 3 overall pick of the 2021 NFL draft—no trade ever materialized.

Instead, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported Monday that Garoppolo and the 49ers "are finalizing a new contract that will make him the highest paid backup in the NFL" in a situation that "keeps Jimmy G on the roster while making clear it's Trey Lance's team going forward."

The news inspired plenty of reaction and some criticism on social media:

Pete Prisco @PriscoCBS

When is he starting? <a href="https://t.co/kJC9jdMHgS">https://t.co/kJC9jdMHgS</a>

Tim Kawakami @timkawakami

I absolutely did not expect this and yes, it opens up the conversation that Shanahan and Lynch feel they need insurance in case Lance isn't good enough this year. <a href="https://t.co/2HPyeaqCkr">https://t.co/2HPyeaqCkr</a>

Matt Maiocco @MaioccoNBCS

Holy @%%*! <a href="https://t.co/ZEUsh1tg5E">https://t.co/ZEUsh1tg5E</a>

Matt Barrows @mattbarrows

I suppose he'll start attending meetings and practices from now on... <a href="https://t.co/ZIUWAdMVKg">https://t.co/ZIUWAdMVKg</a>

Marcus Mosher @Marcus_Mosher

Gotta say... this seems like a bad idea. <a href="https://t.co/3KYeUpTlVd">https://t.co/3KYeUpTlVd</a>

Marcus Mosher @Marcus_Mosher

The last thing you want is Trey Lance looking over his shoulder. <a href="https://t.co/gMsMV8uj9L">https://t.co/gMsMV8uj9L</a>

Dianna Russini @diannaESPN

Real tears and sadness after the NFC Championship for Jimmy G as he thought that was it….8 months later…he remains a Niner for another season. Such a bizarre story, situation, and win/win for both sides! <br><br>San Fran with a top QB room.

Peter Schrager @PSchrags

Jimmy G deal instant analysis:<br><br>1. Rare dude who would accept such a situation. <br>2. Price for Jimmy G goes up a ton over the next 6-10 weeks with QB injuries. <br>3. Backup QB value to SF is enormous. <br>4. Compensatory pick (3rd round) if SF keeps all year. <a href="https://twitter.com/gmfb?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@gmfb</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/nflnetwork?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@nflnetwork</a>

Lance has a higher ceiling and long-term future in San Francisco, but he is also an unproven player at this point. Having Garoppolo on the sidelines could lead to some discussion if the youngster struggles out of the gate.

After all, Garoppolo led the 49ers to the Super Bowl during the 2019 campaign and the NFC Championship Game this past season when he was healthy after playing three games in 2018 and six in 2020.

He may be a game manager who relies on the talent around him to make plays, but all he's done in San Francisco is win. He also has two seasons with more than 3,800 passing yards on his resume.

Lance will surely be under some pressure when the 49ers start the season on Sept. 11 against the Chicago Bears.