Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch just answered quarterback questions for roughly 23 minutes straight. Lynch started the conference call by saying, “yesterday was a really good day for our organization,” as the team retrained Jimmy Garoppolo. The 49ers brass floated the idea of bringing Jimmy back in the past month or so.
“With a player of his caliber, you don’t just allow him to walk... Obviously, there were going to be some deadlines, but Kyle and I started floating the idea about a month ago...It was important for Kyle to let Trey know.”
Keeping Garoppolo on the roster wasn’t going to happen until Jimmy’s camp exhausted every opportunity for something to develop elsewhere before coming to an agreement with San Francisco, per Lynch.
And while both sides discussed the possibility of a return, Shanahan said he felt the chances of Jimmy returning were “slim and none.” That explains why Garoppolo wasn’t practicing with the team during the past month. The deal came to fruition Monday morning and was done shortly after practice finished.
Shanahan isn’t worried about Jimmy being ready to play or not having a playbook since he knows the system. Kyle joked that he doesn’t have a playbook, either.
Trey Lance wasn’t left in the dark during this process. Shanahan said Lance didn’t have any problems and was great with the idea of Garoppolo returning:
“When I told Trey that Jimmy was gonna come back, he said, ‘awesome. That dude was awesome for me last year.’ When you have a QB room that likes each other, it makes it more enjoyable to come to work.”
In a mild surprise, Brock Purdy has made the roster. So, Garoppolo will be QB2 with Purdy as the QB3. Shanahan: “We were really happy with Nate, but Brock won that job.”
The 49ers will eat $2 million in dead money to release Nate Sudfeld. Purdy brought more to the table, has greater upside, and feels like a Shanahan type of backup.
Above all, and most importantly, Shanahan reiterated that this is Lance’s team when talking about the salary cap: “Not at all. That’s why Trey’s our starting QB. That’s why Jimmy wasn’t an option unless he was our backup QB.”
Repeatedly throughout the call, Shanahan said something along the lines of “we didn’t think it was going to end up this way,” suggesting he either expected another team to come calling for Garoppolo or that he wouldn’t be on the roster.
In the end, Garoppolo realized staying in the Bay Area was best for him and, in turn, the 49ers, per Kyle: “I’m glad that what (Garoppolo) thought was the best option for him was a great option for us.”
The roster will be finalized shortly. There will be three quarterbacks. Lance, Garoppolo, and Purdy. Just as we all predicted a month ago.