By all accounts, the San Francisco 49ers had a tremendous season with a window wide open to win a Super Bowl despite their bad loss in Super Bowl LIV to the Kansas City Chiefs. The team is young and talented, but now in the aftermath of their Super Bowl loss, questions seems to be focused on their quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. Garoppolo is bearing most of the blame for their loss to the Chiefs after a bad 4th quarter performance, but it’s not just the blame he’s getting, Garoppolo is getting talks of being replaced by the public after just three years as the starter.
With the 49ers being where they are, many believe they can’t win a championship with Garoppolo at quarterback. That he’s to limited and relies heavily on a defense, running game and a tremendous head coach in Kyle Shanahan. Some even bringing up that Tom Brady, a 49ers fan growing up and a free agent this offseason, should be signed by the 49ers to win a Super Bowl with this San Francisco team. This chatter about Garoppolo is a far cry from where we were with him just three years ago.
Before Garoppolo became the starter after he was traded from the New England Patriots to the 49ers, San Francisco was sitting at 1-10 until Garoppolo was put in Week 11 against the Chicago Bears, helping them to a 15-14 victory. This was the beginning of a 5-game winning streak to close the season for the 49ers and Garoppolo finished the season undefeated while throwing for 1,560 passing yards, 7 touchdowns, 5 interceptions, completing 67% of his passes, and a 96.2 passer rating. Things looked good for Garoppolo. He was heralded as the new face of the league and the next big thing while being compared a lot to his former mentor, Tom Brady.
The 49ers signed Garoppolo to a massive 5-year deal worth up to $137.5 million. Unfortunately, 2018 saw Garoppolo suffer a torn ACL in Week 3, costing him his season. Despite that, Garoppolo came back to put up a real solid year in 2019 for San Francisco throwing 27 touchdown passes, completing 69% of his throws, and achieving a 102.0 passer rating. San Francisco won 13 games this year all with Garoppolo as the starter which puts his overall record in San Francisco at 19-5. While he wasn’t great in the postseason, he was still their quarterback on the road to the Super Bowl. So, what’s the rush now to get rid of him?
Due to the way his contract is structured, the 49ers can release or trade him before April 1st, but they really don’t have a reason to. Finding a quarterback is one of the hardest things to do in sports. If San Francisco somehow gets rid of Garoppolo, there is no guarantee the next guy will step in and be better. Especially compared to what Garoppolo has already done. With the talk that the 49ers should sign Brady, we just got to ask why would the 49ers let a 28-year old potential decade long quarterback who has done nothing but win so far for their organization and just helped them get to a Super Bowl, would replace him for maybe one year of Brady? Even if Brady is the best quarterback ever, the move wouldn’t make any sense.
Garoppolo had a bad 4th quarter in Super Bowl LIV, which is a shame because for 3 quarters he outperformed the eventual MVP of the game, Patrick Mahomes. However, if we are going to say the 49ers should replace him because he lost a Super Bowl, then the Los Angeles Rams should’ve looked for a new quarterback after Jared Goff had a terrible performance in their Super Bowl loss the season before. Which would’ve been insane to suggest. Garoppolo has been solid and consistent so far for the 49ers, and for franchise quarterbacks, that is enough to win you a Super Bowl.