Garoppolo Takes His Magic WestNovember 28, 2017 - Author: John-Mark and Chuck Mallory
San Francisco 49ers Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo Shows His Stuff in Only 3 Plays
In October, the San Francisco 49ers announced they acquired New England Patriots backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.
After getting little play in the shadow of New England quarterback Tom Brady, Garoppolo was put in the Nov. 26 49ers game against the Seattle Seahawks.
With 1:07 remaining in the fourth quarter, 49ers quarterback C. J. Beathard went out with a leg injury.
The excited cheers from the crowd were startling–no, it wasn’t Seattle fans being malicious. As Sporting News reported: “Fans saw Garoppolo warming up on the sideline and began to cheer.”
Garoppolo entered the game, playing three snaps, scrambling for four yards, and throwing a touchdown pass to wide receiver Louis Murphy. Though the game was a loss for the 49ers, the quick touchdown lit the fire of 49ers fans who had been numbed by a season of disappointment.
When Garoppolo, 25, was announced as a 49er, general manager John Lynch said, “Jimmy has displayed the characteristics and traits that we believe are vital to being a successful quarterback in this league. He has had the rare opportunity to sit and learn from a future Hall of Fame quarterback in a championship atmosphere.”
Though he had collected two Super Bowl rings over four years with the New England Patriots, Garoppolo had little play time with the team, playing in 17 games.
This was quite a switch from high school (Rolling Meadows, IL) and college days (University of Eastern Illinois), where he had lots of playing time and in the Chicago area was known as a young quarterback of future-superstar status.
At the University of Eastern Illinois, he started all 45 games in which he appeared and completed 1,047 of 1,668 attempts (62.8 pct.) for 13,151 yards, 118 touchdowns and 51 interceptions.
He was excited about going west to San Francisco. “I got so excited, man,” Garoppolo said in an interview. “I was in my apartment by myself, but I could have run through a wall. That pure excitement of ‘this is really happening…'”
Kendrick Bourne, the 49ers’ original No. 10, generously switched to No. 84, which was important to Garoppolo. “I’ve had it [No. 10] since probably before high school even,” Garoppolo said. “In high school I wore number 10 and I was playing linebacker at the time. It kind of just stuck with me. My first year of college I was number 15, unfortunately, but ever since then I’ve been number 10. It’s done good things for me…”
Now out of the shadow of No. 12 in New England, let’s see what happens with the western No. 10.
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