49ers' Jimmy Garoppolo Says He Wasn't Worried About Tom Brady Contract Rumors

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistAugust 5, 2020

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) and quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10) warm up before an NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
John Raoux/Associated Press

Jimmy Garoppolo knows what it is like to sit behind Tom Brady from his time with the New England Patriots, but he wasn't worried about the same situation becoming a reality on the San Francisco 49ers.

Nick Wagoner of ESPN noted the Niners held "brief internal conversations" about signing Brady this offseason before the all-time great joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a free agent.

"When all that was going on, you hear about it and things like that," Garoppolo said Tuesday. "But I really wasn't too worried. I'm always confident in my play. I know what I put out there (last) season and everything like that. It's all about being confident. It's just part of the business. I've seen both sides of it, so I've been there."

Garoppolo can instead focus on entering a season at full health. He was rehabilitating a knee injury at this time last year, although he started all 16 games in 2019.

"It's definitely night and day compared to where it was last year at this time," he said. "This time last year it was more so getting back into being in a live pocket, having live bullets flying around me and getting used to that, so we're past that. I haven't really thought about it in a long time. ... I think my knee is able to do whatever it needs to do at this point."

San Francisco took the good and the bad with Garoppolo in 2019, his first full year as a starter.

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He completed 69.1 percent of his passes for 3,978 yards and 27 touchdowns while leading the 49ers to the Super Bowl. However, he also threw 13 interceptions in the regular season and struggled massively as his team blew a 10-point lead to the Kansas City Chiefs in the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl.

In fact, he was a mere 3-of-11 passing in that quarter, missing Emmanuel Sanders for a potential game-winning touchdown and throwing an interception as Patrick Mahomes and Co. claimed the Lombardi Trophy.

Given those fourth-quarter struggles, it was fair from San Francisco's perspective to wonder about Brady. After all, the six-time Super Bowl champion has consistently delivered on such stages throughout his illustrious career.

Still, Brady is 43 years old and Garoppolo is 28. Brady's Patriots also lost their first playoff game last postseason to the Tennessee Titans last season and watched the 49ers play the Super Bowl from home.

San Francisco's regular season starts Sept. 13 against the Arizona Cardinals.