Jimmy Garoppolo breaks silence after 49ers traded up for Trey Lance

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Eric Edholm
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The San Francisco 49ers made the biggest gamble in the 2021 NFL draft, trading three future first-round picks, plus a 2022 third-rounder, to the Miami Dolphins for the right to draft Trey Lance.

The 49ers have a starting quarterback "right now," they've said, in Jimmy Garoppolo. But for how long? After all, the post-draft odds on Lance winning Rookie of the Year are a popular play right now.

Lance said Garoppolo reached out to him after the pick was made official. "I was super thankful and grateful for that," Lance would say, in part.

And we've now heard from Garoppolo publicly for the first time since the pick.

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Garoppolo told CBS Radio on Tuesday that 49ers GM John Lynch gave him an idea of what might happen on draft weekend, as rumors swirled about the team's plans at No. 3. That lines up exactly with what Lynch said when he was asked about the communication with Garoppolo.

"Yeah, John called me," Garoppolo said. "He didn't tell me who [they were taking] or how they were going to do it. But he gave me the heads up before.

"John has been really cool throughout this whole process. Throughout the whole thing, it could have gotten a little fishy here and there, but he was really straightforward and I appreciate him for that.”

Compare this situation to the one that is brewing in Green Bay. Aaron Rodgers still remains livid over the Jordan Love pick more than a year ago and is reportedly threatening to retire, perhaps to go host "Jeopardy!"

The Packers' pre- and post-draft communication with Rodgers wasn't great, and now GM Brian Gutekunst is hoping to find a way to reconcile with his star QB.

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has said all the right thinks since the team drafted Trey. Lance. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has said all the right thinks since the team drafted Trey. Lance. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Jimmy Garoppolo taking a diplomatic approach

Don't expect Jimmy G to take the A-Rod scorched-earth approach to his situation in San Francisco.

For one, Garoppolo isn't nearly as accomplished as Rodgers. No. 2, Garoppolo doesn't even turn 30 until November; he might have to think about his next job, not wanting to say anything to give any prospective employer a reason to worry.

Right now, Garoppolo said he doesn't believes he's owed anything for his 24-8 mark as a starter or his bringing the franchise to the Super Bowl two years ago.

"That’s not really the NFL," he said. "It’s a what-have-you-done-for-me-lately type of business. I’ve known that my whole career. It’s one of those things where you’ve gotta go do it again. You can’t be satisfied with doing it once."

Expect him to approach his starting opportunity — however long it lasts — as a chance to change the perception of him a bit after a tough 2020 season that was marred by an ankle injury.

“At the end of the day, like my dad was just saying, all you can ask for is the opportunity," Garoppolo said. "Once they said you’ll have the opportunity to start this year, fight it out, I was all for it."

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