The San Francisco 49ers may have taken a big step toward the playoffs on Sunday, but the debate over Jimmy Garoppolo seems stalled.
There’s no question the 49ers quarterback has delivered the performance they needed over the past two weeks. As figures from Pro Football Reference show, Jimmy G completed 45 of 64 passes, good for three touchdowns and a total of 531 yards through the air. In head coach Kyle Shanahan’s offensive approach, those are ideal numbers, and Garoppolo helped San Francisco beat the Cincinnati Bengals (8-6) and Atlanta Falcons (6-8).
But while there has been a slight uptick in the 30-year-old quarterback’s performance, there are still some San Francisco fans who are understandably hesitant to stick with Garoppolo. Between a $26.4 million cap hit by Spotrac, wavering performances, and Trey Lance waiting in the wings, many are not seeing their hopes despite recent wins.
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Fans point to factors surrounding Jimmy Garoppolo, including Trey Lance
At this point in the season, it makes sense for the San Francisco 49ers to wait until the end of the season for any long-term decisions with Jimmy G and Trey Lance. Plan for the playoffs, let Garoppolo finish what he started and don’t put the rookie in a tight spot. And most fans accept it.
But it’s clear there’s a group within the fan base that believes that once the season is over (barring a Super Bowl run), it’s Trey Lance’s team.
It’s worth noting that Garoppolo’s uptick in performance over the past two weeks has coincided with running backs averaging 4.7 yards per rush, a 0.4 increase on average per ESPN.
The other angle at play for those who don’t believe Garoppolo should stay long-term is his business value, as @HumanGodzilla points out. QBs in the 2021 draft class aren’t as prevalent as those in 2020, which featured Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields and Mac Jones. With that in mind, the San Francisco 49ers could capitalize on the current QB market.
Another user agrees, even introducing Jimmy G to Pittsburgh Steelers fans.
A lot of fans want Jimmy G around
As mentioned above, another trip to the Super Bowl would make getting rid of Jimmy G a near impossible decision. This is where some have set the bar for Garoppolo when it comes to his continued existence as a 49ers starter.
When you have a good thing, there’s not much reason to change it. @BFBreakdowns doesn’t want to hear about Trey Lance at this point in the year.
While the Jimmy Garoppolo debate still rages on, there’s a line between personal desires and those who take a more pragmatic approach. Trey Lance may still have a lot of people wanting him to be the starter, it seems impossible for Jimmy G to be seated for Lance at this point, even if his performances suffer in the next week or two.
On the other end of the spectrum, there are still fans like @jmines17 who think Garoppolo’s departure shouldn’t be on the table at all, even after this season is over.