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Insider: Relationship between Jimmy Garoppolo, 49ers went 'south'

Yardbarker logo Yardbarker 2/7/2023 Zac Wassink, Yardbarker
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. © Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.

There's additional information on why the San Francisco 49ers are seemingly happy to move on from veteran quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo this offseason. 

The Athletic's Tim Kawakami reported that he "checked around the team and discovered" that the relationships between Garoppolo and San Francisco head coach Kyle Shanahan/general manager John Lynch seem "to have gone a bit south in the days or weeks leading up to the NFC Championship Game."

"I don’t know if there was a specific blow-up or conversation that led to this," Kawakami continued. "I don’t know what the main issue was." 

Lynch and Shanahan didn't hide they wanted to trade Garoppolo last offseason but couldn't due to his recovery from shoulder surgery. 

The 31-year-old ultimately agreed to a restructured contract to stay with the 49ers and served as a temporary hero after Trey Lance suffered a season-ending ankle injury in Week 2. Garoppolo then went down with a broken foot on Dec. 4, but the club kept him on the active roster in the hope that he could potentially return for the conference title game or the Super Bowl. 

Brock Purdy emerged as a rookie sensation after he replaced Garoppolo but suffered a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow on Jan. 29 and isn't expected to practice before August at the earliest. 

Nevertheless, Shanahan declared last week that he doesn't "see any scenario" where Garoppolo stays with the club through the start of the new league year next month. 

"There was no chance Garoppolo was sticking around again as the 49ers' backup in 2023, and there was also no chance that Shanahan or Lynch would’ve wanted him to once Purdy emerged as a quality starter," Kawakami added. 

Garoppolo won six of nine starts before his latest injury this season and, per ESPN stats, ranked third among eligible players with a 103.0 passer rating. He was 16th with a 54.3 total QBR and tossed 16 touchdown passes with just four interceptions in fewer than 11 full games. 

Despite Garoppolo's numbers, his overall 38-17 regular-season record with the Niners, and his popularity inside the San Francisco locker room, it's clear Shanahan and Lynch are keen on moving forward with Lance atop the depth chart at least until Purdy can throw footballs in practice sessions once again. 

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