SANTA CLARA (CBS SF) — Less than two seasons away from leading the San Francisco 49ers to the Super Bowl, Jimmy Garoppolo said he was overwhelmed with emotions when the team’s brain trust told him they planned to draft a quarterback with the No.3 pick.
On Tuesday, Garoppolo was on the field with top draft pick Trey Lance for the off-season organized team activities (OTA).READ MORE: UPDATE: All Lanes of Westbound I-580 In Oakland Reopen Following Police Activity
It was the moment many of the 49ers fans have been waiting for.
“Jimmy’s been hurt a few times and we really haven’t had anything to put in his place if something happens to him and I think we’ve resolved that,” said 49ers ultra-fan Jesse Mendez, who leads a South Bay fan group called 408 Faithfulls.
To Mendez there isn’t a quarterback controversy yet.
“Over the next year, maximum two years, that’s where the controversy will come in because Trey is going to be battling for that spot,” he said.
For now, Head Coach Kyle Shanahan is downplaying the notion of a quarterback controversy.
“We’re drilling the heck out of them now and getting some idea of what we’re working with,” Shanahan said.
After practice, Garappolo met with reporters to talk about the off-season and was asked about his feeling when the team told him they were moving up in the draft and selecting a quarterback.
“When it initially happened, there’s a million emotions that go on throughout your head and you think of all the possible scenarios and things like that,” he said. “But at the end of the day, I want to play football. I want to go out there and win games. That’s what I do. It wasn’t anything too crazy. It took a little while to process everything. But once I did, it was just, go out there and ball.”READ MORE: Oakland School Board Discusses Reinstating Popular Police Mentoring Program
“You’ve just got to attack it,” he continued. “NFL is a crazy business, things happen, but you’ve just got to attack it day-by-day and make the best of it.”
Listen To Audio Of Garappolo News Conference
Garoppolo is coming back after a disappointing 2020 season that saw him sidelined after 6 games with an injured ankle.
“Getting the ankle right, doing mobility, things like that, trying to keep the muscles pliable and staying hydrated,” the veteran said of his off-season training routine. “All that stuff applies. I think really, it’s just getting the fundamentals down and playing within the offense. When I play within the offense, things are good and things go well and I stay healthy. So that’s a big part of the offseason.”
“Ankle feels great,” he added. “It really hasn’t been a bother since, I don’t know. I can’t remember when. The knee brace, though, that’s just kind of one of those things that will come and go. I don’t mean to keep throwing you guys off with that. But, yeah, that’s about it.”
He told reporters that he’s developed a comfortable relationship with Lance so far.
“Trey’s been cool. He has,” Garoppolo said. “The whole QB room is really good. It’s a good group of guys. We’re pretty deep this year, brought (quarterbacks coach Rich Scangarello) Scang back as the QB coach, happy to see him again. It’s a great group we’ve got in there. We’re tight group. Everyone’s been competing so far. It’s been a lot fun.”
When asked about an off-season filled with trade rumors and questions over who will be the 49ers starting quarterback, Garoppolo said he chooses to focus on the things he can control.
“If you start thinking about all of those things, especially as a quarterback, you’re going to be in some trouble.” he said. “I’ve got enough things to worry about just with the offense and things like that, trying to improve things here and there.”MORE NEWS: Supply Chain Crisis: Shipping Industry Leaders Meet In San Francisco, Warn Backlog To Stretch Long Past Holidays
“At the end of the day, we’re playing football. That’s what I love to do. I love to go out there and be with the guys, win football games. That’s what I do. It’s one of those things that the situation is what it is. It’s not changing. You just try to make the best of it. The way I do that, I attack each day and just try to put my best foot forward.”