David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

John Lynch says 49ers could draft 1st-round QB but doesn’t anticipate that ‘right now,’ expresses belief in Garoppolo

Jan 9, 2021 at 12:31 PM--

San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch spoke with Tim Kawakami of The Athletic this week and was once again asked about the team's quarterback situation. Now, this was all before the buzz surrounding Deshaun Watson's disappointment in the Houston Texans and the potential trade talk that ensued. Hence, the focus was on the possibility that the 49ers might look to the first round of the draft to bolster the quarterback position.

Kawakami, as part of the interview on his podcast, The TK Show, asked Lynch if the 49ers might consider using their top pick on one of the highly-touted incoming rookie signal-callers.

"We certainly could," Lynch responded while laughing. "I don't anticipate that right now, but we're so early in the process. We'll do what's best for this team."

That doesn't mean that Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan's confidence in Jimmy Garoppolo has diminished. The GM wanted to make sure he wasn't sending that message out with the statement.

"I do want to make it clear — I do think Kyle and I have been fairly transparent since we've been here — we do have a lot of belief in Jimmy Garoppolo," Lynch continued. "And, where does that come from? Well, it comes from the sample that we have, and when he's been out there, we've been better, and we've been successful.

"In addition to that, his teammates understand that. I've always believed leaders not only play at a high level, but they make everyone else around them better. He's had that quality on our team.

"I think he's a good fit for what we do system-wise. Are there some areas he could improve on? Sure. And we'll always challenge him to do that, but we have liked working with him, and we're excited to have him back."

Garoppolo is 22-8 as a starter with the 49ers. He's 24-9 if you include the playoffs. The quarterback helped guide the 49ers to a Super Bowl appearance in his first full season as a starter. The problem is availability. Garoppolo has missed 23 games over the past three seasons.

"Look, we understand that availability is a big part of this thing," Lynch commented. "It's something that we talked to our team (about). We have to find a way to be more available as a team. Was this year an anomaly? I don't know. We can't treat it as such. We have to look, and everyone's got to look inward as to what we can do better, and we challenged our entire group to do that."

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