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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Should the 49ers Play Jimmy Garoppolo Through an Injury?

Chris Beno
Jan 6, 2022 at 11:00 AM--

If you're like me, you're ready for the quarterback drama to stop. Not even an injury to Jimmy Garoppolo's throwing hand, which requires surgery this off-season is putting a stop to the chatter.

If the 49ers still had backups like CJ Beathard or Nick Mullens, maybe a less than 100% Jimmy Garoppolo would be the better choice going in to a must-win game. But that's not the case. Rookie quarterback Trey Lance showed enough in the second half last week against Houston to instill confidence in him going forward.

Here you have orthopedic surgeon Dr. Nirav Pandya talking about Garoppolo's injury on 95.7 The Game.

According to head coach Kyle Shanahan it's just a grade 3 sprain with a chipped bone and it doesn't require surgery.

So, the question is still, do we listen to the doctors and surgeons or the head coach who has been known to downplay any and all injuries?

History has shown us that Garoppolo has been nothing short of a liability when trying to play through an injury. Since suffering an ankle injury in week 2 of the 2020 season, Garoppolo has attempted to play through an injury eight times.

In those eight games he went 60-98, 839 yards passing, three touchdowns and seven interceptions. That's only a 61% completion rate and almost one interception per game.

One of those games was Week 4 of this season against Seattle, when Garoppolo opted to sit out the second half after suffering a calf contusion on the opening drive of the game.

That was the game that the offense was only able to come away with seven points in that first half because they were unable to move the ball.

Last season against the Miami Dolphins, the 49ers rushed Garoppolo back from an injury, which lead to one of the worst performances of his entire career. Garoppolo went 7-17 for 77 yards, zero touchdowns and two interceptions. That's a passer rating of 15.7.

Now the 49ers are dealing with an injury to Garoppolo's throwing hand and are holding out hope that he can go on Sunday against the L.A Rams to try and make it into the playoffs.

Was rookie quarterback Trey Lance that bad against the Houston Texans that Shanahan still thinks an injured Garoppolo gives them the best chance to win? Lance in the second half of that game on Sunday looked great.

Shanahan clings to any type of competitive advantage. Holding out hope for a possible return of Jimmy Garoppolo is him doing just that. Shanahan is hoping the Rams won't know which quarterback to prepare for, as if they don't have team doctors who know better.

What we do know is that Lance needs time to find his rhythm in a game. We all saw that in the first half last week. Going with Garoppolo and possibly having to switch to Lance doesn't bode well for either player.

Make no mistake, a less than 100% Garoppolo is a liability to this team.
  • Chris Beno
  • Written by:
    Coming from Elk Grove, California I grew up a Bay Area sports fan. I've been cheering for the 49ers for as long as I can remember. In 2005 I joined the Army when I was 18 and got stationed at Fort Hood, Texas. I just kind of hung around here. I've always enjoyed writing and have typically focused on writing music. I am truly blessed to get to cover the 49ers, and have my articles published on the 49ers Webzone. I didn't realize it was something I wanted to pursue as a career, but am now focused on doing just that. I appreciate all of the Faithful that take the time to read the articles people put out there.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.

1 Comment

  • J.J.
    Good article! The only I disagree with was the statement: "What we do know is that Lance needs time to find his rhythm in a game." That is not what we know. What we know is that it takes Trey not time but being able to actually throw the ball like a quarterback to get in a rhythm. And it took Kyle way too long in last weeks game to let Trey get in a rhythm. I'm sorry, but when you Only allow Trey to pass on only SOME 3rd and long situations, and for almost 2 whole quarters, that's horrible. Kyle's playcalling with Trey was horrible in the 1st Arizona game, and it was horrible for the first half of the Texans game. What worries me is that to win against the Rams, especially with all our defensive backs potentially being out, we need to do exactly what we did last game and run the ball down there throat. Our run game and the types of run Playa being called when Trey is in just isn't great. And I feel like we put everything our run game has to offer on tape now, which is why Houston was so effective at stopping a lot of our misdirection run plays until Kyle let Trey air it out. Either way, I am excited about the game! Let's go 49ers!
    Jan 6, 2022 at 12:17 PM

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