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Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

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Transcripts: 49ers QBs Trey Lance, Jimmy Garoppolo speak after Thursday’s practice

Sep 1, 2022 at 6:38 PM--

San Francisco 49ers backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo spoke with reporters on Thursday, his first media availability with the team since last season's playoffs. Starting quarterback Trey Lance also spoke. Here is everything they had to say.

Transcript provided by the San Francisco 49ers Communications staff.

QB Trey Lance

How was it to have QB Jimmy Garoppolo out there rotating drills with you?

"Awesome. It's good to have him back. Good to have him back in the building, in the QB room again. Like I've said, he's been a big brother to me since my first day in the league, since I got drafted the day I got drafted. I know he's got my back. I've got his back. I'm excited to go through this year with him. He's going to add a lot to our quarterback room. I mean, that's the goal for us is just have the best quarterback room in the league and we're pretty close if we're not there. I'm super excited just to have him in the room, another guy who's done it. I got to watch him do it last year, got to learn a ton from him and I'm going to continue to learn as much as I can from him, take all the advice that he's got for me this year."

Did this come as a shock to you when general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan shared it with you a few days ago or did you kind of see this might evolve the last few weeks?

"Not necessarily a shock. I kind of knew. He's always been on the roster and I see him around every day. We talk almost every day. So, definitely not a shock, but I was excited for Nate that he got another opportunity. I didn't know what would happen between [Detroit Lions QB] Nate [Sudfeld] and [QB] Brock [Purdy] and how many quarterbacks and guys, everything with cut day. So this week's been a little bit of ups and downs, lost some guys that I was pretty close with, but it's just how it goes. But no, it definitely wasn't, I don't think a shock, but, like I said, it's great to have him back."

Did you have any trepidation at all when they first mentioned it to you?

"No, not at all. I was super excited. Like I said, he's done it. And for him, I'm going to use him as a huge resource for me throughout this whole entire year. He's always been willing to help me out, so I'm super excited for it."

Kyle said he made it a point to talk to you before they re-signed Jimmy. What was his message to you in those conversations?

"Just that nothing changes. It makes the QB room that much better, another great resource for me, a guy that's played in this offense, a guy that's done it, who's played a lot of ball. So for me, I'm going to use it. My mindset on it is Jimmy's going to be a huge resource for me as he always has been since draft day."

The conversations that you had with Jimmy before he was coming back for sure, you said that you talk about life. Does it shift now to more football talk?

"Yeah. We're around each other a lot more. So, we're around each other in meetings, around each other in the building, more lifts, workouts, everything like that. So definitely we get to talk more ball, which has been awesome. Him watching practice with us, being in meetings with us, just him being back around, it feels great."

What was your first interaction with him like after you found this out?

"We talked the night that the news broke just on the phone. We texted and then I saw him in the morning that next morning we had practice. So came in, we had talked at his locker for a little bit. I mean, it was all love. Nothing's changed between us. I can say it a million times, but he's been my big bro. Nothing's going to change there."

He was the one and you were the two last year and everything's a competition in the NFL. What changes now that you're the one he's the two? Is it just the same kind of competition or does the relationship have to change a little bit?

"No, I don't think the relationship changes, the dynamic. It's different roles. Like I said, he's still going to be a huge resource for me. I'm going to be able to ask him questions, bounce ideas off him, watch tape, plays in practice, asking him after each play what did he see? The same thing I could do with Nate and same thing I could do with Brock and same thing I could do with all of our QB coaches."

You do have a guy who started a lot of games on this team, won a lot of big games. People are going to be looking to him if there's a couple of bad series. Does that put some more pressure on you?

"No. I'm worried about what the guys in the locker room think, what I think, what the coaches think, what the guys in this organization think. Outside of that, I know there's Jimmy, there's Trey, there's all that, but this is going to be a collaborative group and I know Jimmy's going to have my back through it all."

Was it normal having him there at practice?

"Yeah, it was super normal actually. You guys probably wouldn't even believe it. It was fun to have him around. He's a high energy guy, in the huddle, outside of the huddle, in the locker room, whatever it is. He's a great dude to have around and I'm super glad he's back."

Did you have meetings before practice? Was that the first time he was back with the team, in a meeting, that kind of thing?

"Yeah, I think the day after he signed, I don't even know what day it is. I think Tuesday was his first day back in the building. So, we met Tuesday, got to talk. Him and [quarterback coach Brian] Griese and [assistant quarterbacks coach] Klay [Kubiak] got to talk. It's going to keep growing. I'm super excited for it."

You really hear Jimmy on the practice field. He's got that megaphone. Is that something as a quarterback that you work on and something that you've talked to him about? How loud he projects?

"Yeah, absolutely. For him, I think it definitely comes probably a little bit more naturally. I have to try to talk with a deep voice a little bit better so I don't sound 22. That's one of the many things that I know he's going to bring. He's a resource for me to bounce ideas off of, to get advice from and continue to learn as much as I can."

Talk about role reversals. One of it is leadership. Is it strange? He was a leader of this team for a long time and now it's you and he's giving it to you and he's right here. Is that a little strange?

"I'm sure from the outside looking in, but I guess from our team, nothing's changed. Nate obviously left, got a new opportunity in Detroit and Jimmy's in his spot. So for me, my mindset, nothing changes. I don't think for our team, our organization really anything changes, but it's obviously just another upgrade to the QB room."

What kind of summer do you think you've had? What areas do you think you've been good at and what areas do you think maybe need more improvement?

"I've had a great offseason and training camp. I think things have gone well. I've gotten to know the guys better and the new guys, [WR] Ray-Ray [McCloud III], kind of thrown with [TE] George [Kittle] and [WR] Deebo [Samuel] and some of those guys I didn't get to work with this off season as much. Ups and downs for sure, every day going against our defense and the stuff we do. We have be ready to go. So I think my mental toughness, my mentality has changed in a good way. There's ups and downs to every day, every rep. So I'm learning as much as I possibly can. There's countless areas that I know I'm going to continue to improve on and countless areas that I have improved on as well."

Did Kyle say, "Hey, Trey, we might do this with Jimmy, if you don't want to do it, let me know?" Was that any part of this discussion?

"No. It's not my decision. It's an organization decision. But when they told me, I knew Jimmy's been on the roster, on the team, this whole entire time. So obviously I knew it was a possibility to bring him back. There's been no bad blood at all between me and Jimmy since day one. So, I was all arms open, excited to have him back"

It's early in the process, but what's the dynamic of the quarterback group with Brock in there? Between all three of you?

"Brock's done a great job and he's been awesome. I was super excited for him. Everyone congratulated him that he made the roster. I was super excited for him and he deserved it. He earned it this whole preseason, the whole training camp, even going back to OTAs, the way he handles himself. He's actually older than me, so that bugs me a little bit. But it's been great having him in the room. The way he's picked up the offense so fast, his footwork, everything is still improving and he's doing a great job. Great guy to be around."

QB Jimmy Garoppolo

Does this feel a little weird right now?

"Just getting back into the swing of things, I think. It'll take a couple days to get back into it, but no, it's nice to see you guys again, man. It's been a while."

When we spoke to you last, it was February 1st and there was some question about whether you would need surgery on your thumb. And the thought was that your shoulder would heal on its own. Can you kind of take us through the timeline on how things proceeded from that point forward?

"Yeah well, it actually turned out the other way. The thumb wasn't as serious as the shoulder was. The thumb kind of tacked down. We did rehab and stuff like that, but it really took care of itself. Didn't need surgery or anything like that, so that was nice. But the shoulder we tried to do. I really don't like to get surgery if I don't have to, so I was really in the thought of I could rehab this thing. I played three, four games on it, whatever. I think I could get through this after about three, four weeks of that, it just wasn't happening, wasn't working and we were like, alright, we have to get the surgery. So that's when we made that choice and I'm happy the way it worked out. I don't think it was the exact way I wanted it to work out, but everything happens for a reason."

In making that choice, were you aware that, okay, this could really scuttle any trade scenario that was happening?

"Yeah, you know in the back of your head that that could happen, but you have to take care of your body. If your body's not going to be able to go out there and perform, then what are you worth? So, I had to get that taken care of, that was priority one and the rest took care of itself, I think."

What was this whole period of limbo like for you? It seemed like you could have asked for something or the 49ers could have done something, but --?

"Yeah, it was weird. It was different than any situation I've ever been in. I've been in some weird ones too. So that's saying something, but no, I think things worked out for the best. It was a lot of ups and downs, rocky roads here and there, but I think throughout the whole thing, me, I'm happy with where I'm at, happy to be with the Niners. I think Niners are happy to have me back and I think things are working out pretty well."

You report to training camp on time, you're out there during some practices running, at what point did it cross your mind and become a conscious thing? Like, you know what, I could end up back here?

"It really wasn't on my mind to be completely honest. I was training out here. I had to be here, so I was here for that reason, but I don't know. I was just trying to get my body right. Like I was saying, getting the shoulder right. I felt very confident out there and I knew that I was ready to roll. I just needed to figure out where it was. And things kind of fell into place these last couple days, really. Just right before it all happened."

Why didn't you at any point, just say, 'Hey, I've, I've done some good stuff here. Release me, let me go find a place'?

"That just wasn't the way I wanted to go. There was a thought of that at one point, trust me there was, but that came and went and I don't know things just kind of kept falling into place. And I'm one of those people that I don't really want to ruffle the feathers too much here and there and I kind of want to just go with the flow. And that's kind of the way the training camp was going and I was happy with it. And like I said, things worked out and I'm happy now."

There was a deadline here essentially for this to happen. What made you want to come back here specifically versus, hey, they could have released you and you could've explored those other options?

"A lot of things, actually. I think just the opportunity to be with the same team. A team that I'm familiar with. Offense, I'm familiar with. Coaches, players, all that stuff really played a big role in it. Seeing the other opportunities that were out there and you weigh the pros and cons of everything. Trust me. There was a lot of back and forth going on just with other teams and what I wanted my future to look like. And so, this is what I wanted. I'm happy the way it worked out. And it's just the familiarity, I think was a big part of it."

When you're doing that, you mentioned the future, how much are you thinking of what is best for me to position me next offseason to go?

"Yeah, you always have to think about that. It's as much as you're in it for the wins and everything like that, you have to look into the future a little bit, contract situations and all that. And I think everybody does that to a certain degree and you have to be smart in that sense of it, but at the end of the day, I'm a 49er right now and I'm happy about that."

You had the ability to talk to other teams this summer. Was there ever a situation where a team came to you and said, we'd want to trade for you under a contract reduction, did it come to that point with any team?

"Not to that degree. A little different verbiage, I guess you could say, but there was a lot of discussions with other teams."

Did you check with QB Trey Lance just to make sure he was okay with it or did you just know he'd be okay with it?

"Yeah, just talking to [head coach] Kyle [Shanahan] and [general manager] John [Lynch], they were pretty clear about it. Didn't directly talk to Trey about it, but Kyle and John said that they had talked to him and everything. And, me and Trey, honestly, I know that a lot of stuff gets made in the media, but we have a good relationship, man. So everyone can say what they want, but we went through it last year and it is very similar to this situation, so it's not like we haven't done it before."

It never happens like this though where a former starter comes back and stays as the backup. Is it a little bit of a blow to your ego? Is it a little bit tough to kind of wrap your mind around you are no longer to starter, you won a lot of big games here and you're coming back as a backup?

"If that's going to take a blow to your ego, you have to check your ego a little bit, but no, I think you have to know who you are in this league. Who you are as a player, who you are as a person and I think that's going to carry you a long way. So that's why I'm really not too concerned about that."

Is your shoulder 100% game ready and recovered or are you still ramping that up?

"Just with practice every day it'll help a little bit more and more. Just get more and more used to it, but yeah, I feel good with it. I feel very confident. I'm happy with where it's at."


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