In the immediate aftermath of the 49ers orchestrating a blockbuster trade to move up to the No. 3 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft and position themselves to select their quarterback-of-the-future, Adam Schefter quoted a 49ers insider as saying, "Jimmy is here to stay. He's our guy this year."
A day later, 49ers GM John Lynch reportedly doubled down on that, telling NFL Network analyst Steve Wyche the team will select a quarterback with the third pick and that quarterback could be groomed under Jimmy Garoppolo as the heir-apparent starter.
In what can only be described as the most obvious lie in the history of lying, one struggles to understand who the 49ers believe is gullible enough to buy this lemon they're selling. Beyond Garoppolo's injury-riddled past, mediocre on-field performance and the fact that the 49ers can cut or trade him and save over $23 million in cap space in 2021, there is also no way the 49ers just mortgaged their future to draft a backup quarterback.
If you thought the Packers moving up to draft Jordan Love in the first round last year was bad, imagine the 49ers giving up everything they just did to pick a backup for a guy who's never made a Pro Bowl and has missed 23 of his last 48 regular-season games. No, absolutely not. No one is buying this tale so they might as well stop selling it.
The 49ers just traded away the No. 12 pick in this year's draft plus first and third-round picks in 2022 and a 2023 first-round pick to move up nine spots this year. You don't give up two future first-rounders to select a backup. You do it to select a game-changer.
Whether that's Justin Fields of Ohio State, Trey Lance of North Dakota State or Mac Jones of Alabama is uncertain. But Lynch told Wyche they will pick a quarterback and, with Jacksonville picking Trevor Lawrence No. 1 and the Jets expected to pick Zach Wilson No. 2, the odds are one of the former three quarterbacks will be the selection.
That leaves Garoppolo as the odd-man-out. There should be some trade interest for him from teams like the Patriots, who originally traded Garoppolo to the 49ers, and Broncos, who don't seem sold on Drew Lock.
Perhaps that is why the 49ers have said Garoppolo is their guy -- to create leverage in trade talks. But Garoppolo isn't going to fetch a massive return no matter what. Not with his injury-riddled past. Not when his best season yielded only 28 touchdowns against 18 turnovers. And not when he costs over $26 million a year.
At this point, the 49ers should just take what they can get for Garoppolo and move on. They'll save the aforementioned $23.6 million in cap space this year and pick up a late-round draft pick. More importantly, their new rookie won't have the distraction of being asked about Garoppolo all year. No one wants that.
It's time to be honest and move on. Garoppolo isn't starting one game for the 49ers in 2021. Whoever they pick No. 3 will be their quarterback moving forward, no matter how many lies the team tries to feed the masses.