Jimmy Garoppolo might never leave Santa Clara.
Maybe that’s an exaggeration, but he’s been written off countless times, only to find himself still wearing red and gold. After the team openly trying to trade him, then retaining him, he’s having perhaps the best season of his career.
And according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Garoppolo could stick around a while longer.
“Both Jimmy Garoppolo and the 49ers are open to him coming back to San Francisco in 2023 under the right circumstances,” Rapoport said. “They haven’t discussed a deal, but my guess is it would be a short-term deal to keep Garoppolo there, maybe let Trey Lance learn a little bit more before assuming the role of starting quarterback.”
Garoppolo will be a free agent after the season and cannot be franchise tagged, per an agreement with the team.
It’s unclear what his market would be like, but it would be a financial work of acrobatics for the 49ers to keep him. San Francisco has more than $216 million in cap liabilities next season, with a projected $14.5 million in cap space, per OverTheCap.
No deal is impossible, and contract restructures can open up substantial cap space, but there are myriad teams (like the New York Jets) who have the capabilities to outbid the 49ers for Garoppolo if they so choose. All of that, of course, is months from now, with San Francsico’s focus on Sunday on the Mike McDaniel-led Miami Dolphins.