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Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

49ers QB Jimmy Garoppolo says Panthers were one of the top teams interested in acquiring him via trade

Oct 6, 2022 at 5:12 PM--

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Had things worked out just a little differently for quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, he might have been playing against the San Francisco 49ers this Sunday as a member of the Carolina Panthers.

The Panthers were one of several NFL teams in the market for a signal caller this offseason and were at one point moving along towards a possible acquisition of Garoppolo, the quarterback said Thursday. Garoppolo will be under center for the 49ers on Sunday afternoon when they face the Panthers in Charlotte (4:05 p.m. ET/1:05 p.m. PT, CBS) and will match up against Baker Mayfield, whom the Panthers acquired from the Cleveland Browns in July.

"I think we were advancing with a couple different teams," Garoppolo told reporters following Thursday's 49ers practice. "Nothing obviously came to fruition. Yeah, they [the Panthers] were top of the list I would say -- one of the top couple."

Garoppolo's trade market was a mystery throughout the offseason and was complicated by a shoulder procedure he underwent in March that may have caused some teams to back away. Garoppolo said there were still a few teams interested, with his agents keeping him posted on the situation throughout the offseason.

"It was more my agents would talk to them, then my agents would talk to me -- kind of be the middleman," Garoppolo said. "But yeah, there were discussions with multiple teams, but I'm glad the way things worked out."

No trade ever materialized involving Garoppolo, of course, and eventually he and the 49ers came to an agreement on a restructured contract that kept him with the team through 2022. Garoppolo started for the 49ers since arriving via trade in 2017, but he was widely expected to play football for another team in 2022 after the 49ers shifted their focus to Trey Lance. Lance's season-ending ankle injury against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 2 unexpectedly put Garoppolo back in the starting spot, giving him an opportunity he's happy to have.

"Like I said, I'm glad the way things worked out. I'm here, so I'm focused on this stuff now," Garoppolo said.

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