The Washington Commanders were reportedly favorites to trade for Jimmy Garoppolo this offseason before he underwent shoulder surgery.
Tim Keown and Nick Wagoner of ESPN reported the Commanders were "poised" to trade for Garoppolo until testing revealed the quarterback's shoulder was not healing as hoped. Doctors recommended surgery, and the Commanders moved on to trade for Carson Wentz.
Garoppolo spent his offseason rehabbing rather than getting acclimated to a new team, while every franchise looking for a new quarterback went elsewhere to find their answer.
In the end, Garoppolo languished on the sidelines throughout training camp, throwing on the side and hoping a deal would surface. General manager John Lynch said there were no serious trade discussions during camp, with teams seemingly hoping the 49ers would simply release the veteran quarterback.
"That's why we were a little at a loss," Lynch said. "Because you can talk to his doctor, you can talk to our doctor, you can talk to a lot of people and he was doing well."
The 49ers ultimately wound up agreeing to restructure Garoppolo's contract at the end of the preseason, locking him in as a backup to Trey Lance—a move that ultimately proved fortuitous over the weekend.
Lance's season-ending ankle injury re-opened the door for Garoppolo, who will now have the rest of 2022 to prove himself both healthy and capable. Garoppolo's new deal included no-trade and no-tag clauses, meaning he will be an unrestricted free agent in March, barring the unlikely scenario of the 49ers deciding to cut bait on Lance and move forward with Garoppolo as the franchise quarterback.
The Commanders, for now, appear comfortable with their decision. Wentz has looked solid through the first two regular-season games, leading Washington to a 1-1 record.
The 49ers, meanwhile, are thankful the Commanders didn't roll the dice on Garoppolo's shoulder.