Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports


Rapoport: 49ers remain committed to Trey Lance in 2022

Jan 16, 2022 at 11:10 AM--


Sunday could be quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo's final game in red and gold. Of course, the San Francisco 49ers hope Garoppolo keeps playing beyond this weekend, but not necessarily beyond the playoffs. That's because most believe the team wants to transition to its No. 3 overall pick, Trey Lance, for 2022.

"My understanding is the 49ers are still committed to first-round pick Trey Lance as their starter moving forward, which means they're expected to explore trade options for Garoppolo," Ian Rapoport said on NFL Network. "And for his part, he really seems to be soaking it in and savoring this moment. Don't take my word for it. Garoppolo actually told [The] MMQB, earlier in the week, that he thought before the last game, 'This could be it.'"


It sounds like Rapoport's comments are based on the lengthy storyline from the season and player comments over the last few weeks and not necessarily based on any new information. The plan was always to draft Lance and have the rookie sit and learn behind Garoppolo. Internally, the 49ers felt they were built to win now and didn't want to put the pressure of the team's lofty hopes for the season on the shoulders of a rookie.

Before the 49ers' regular-season finale against the Los Angeles Rams—a game San Francisco needed to win to make the playoffs—fullback Kyle Juszczyk approached Garoppolo.

"And we hugged," Garoppolo told Albert Breer of The MMQB, "and he was like, 'Man, I don't want to get emotional or anything, but this is our last regular-season game together.' It was a pretty cool moment, and from that point on, I really was like, 'This could be it.'"

Added Rapoport: "Expect the same thoughts, Tom [Pelissero], today from Garoppolo."

In Week 18, Garoppolo turned in a gutsy performance, playing through an injured right thumb and helping to extend the 49ers' season. Their playoff run begins on Sunday against the Dallas Cowboys.



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