49ers

49ers sign QB Jimmy Garoppolo to five-year deal

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49ers sign QB Jimmy Garoppolo to five-year deal

Update (5:25 p.m. PT): The 49ers announced they have officially signed quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to a five-year contract. See below for details.

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The 49ers and quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo completed the first major achievement in assuring a union that lasts a “long, long time.”

Garoppolo is becoming the highest-paid player in the NFL, per a league source.

Garoppolo agreed Thursday to a five-year, $137.5 million contract with guarantees totaling $74 million, a league source told NBC Sports Bay Area.

The NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo was first to report the total amount of the contract, and NBC Bay Area’s Raj Mathai was first to report the agreement. Adam Schefter of ESPN reported Garoppolo is scheduled to be paid nearly $90 million over the first three years, the largest three-year cash total in the league.

The annual average pay of $27.5 million eclipses the previous-high contract of Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford, who signed a deal in August  that averages $27 million a year.

The multi-year agreement was considered the top priority of the 49ers’ offseason under general manager John Lynch.

The 49ers acquired Garoppolo in a blockbuster trade with the New England Patriots for just a second-round draft pick prior to the NFL trade deadline. Garoppolo arrived in Santa Clara on Oct. 31 to join his new organization.

At the end of the season, Lynch promised that signing Garoppolo to a long-term contract extension was a top offseason priority.

“You have our assurances – and the fans do – that we’d like nothing more than to make him a Niner for a long, long time,” Lynch said of Garoppolo.

Garoppolo, 26, a four-year veteran, spent his first three games with the 49ers on the sideline in a backup role to rookie quarterback C.J. Beathard. Garoppolo was elevated into the starting lineup on Dec. 3 against the Chicago Bears.

The 49ers went 5-0 with Garoppolo at quarterback. Including his two starts at the beginning of the 2016 season with the Patriots when Tom Brady was serving a four-game suspension, Garoppolo is 7-0 as a starting quarterback in the NFL.

The 49ers’ offensive numbers skyrocketed in every statistical category with Garoppolo, who also was immediately recognized as a leader on the team.

Garoppolo completed 67.4 percent of his pass attempts for 1,560 yards with seven touchdowns, five interceptions and a passer rating of 96.2. His quick release was also instrumental in taking just eight sacks in five games.

Eric Reid calls out 49ers' messaging on Black Lives Matter tweet

Eric Reid calls out 49ers' messaging on Black Lives Matter tweet

Eric Reid sent a strong statement to the 49ers tweeting "Black Lives Matter" and #BlackoutTuesday. The former 49ers safety responded with "I think you meant Blackball Tuesday" and called the organization hypocrites. 

Reid joined Colin Kaepernick in kneeling during the playing of the national anthem as a form of a peaceful protest against racial and social injustices, including police brutality, throughout the 2016 season when both players were part of the 49ers. Kaepernick has not been signed by an NFL team since opting out of his 49ers contract ahead of the 2017 offseason.

General manager John Lynch admitted in May 2017 the 49ers told Kaepernick they would have released him if he didn't opt out of his contract.

The quarterback alleged NFL owners conspired to keep him out of the league because of his protest, but Kaepernick ultimately settled a collusion lawsuit with the NFL last year. Reid clearly agrees with Kaepernick's beliefs regarding the league "blackballing" him due to his protests. 

[49ERS INSIDER PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

CEO Jed York announced Saturday night the 49ers will be donating $1 million to local and national organizations committed to social change. York exlained why Monday, and even said, "We need to continue work that Colin drew attention to four years ago in 2016, and we need to continue to let our players, first and foremost, know they have a voice to be able to speak out" in an interview with the NFL Network's Jim Trotter.

After former 49ers receiver Torrey Smith praised York Saturday, Reid, who was teammates with Smith on the Carolina Panthers in 2018, expressed he had very different opinions and experiences with York than Smith did. 

[RELATED: Jackson insists 'fake' NFL should apologize to Kaepernick]

Reid continued to kneel in 2017 with the 49ers and the team opted not to re-sign him in free agency. The Carolina Panthers signed him to a one-year contract on Sept. 27, 2018, weeks into the 2018 season. 

The former 49ers first-round draft pick recorded 130 tackles and four sacks last season with the Panthers. He signed a three-year contract extension with Carolina in February 2019 and was cut one year later in March 2020.

Vikings linebackers rip NFL's statement after George Floyd's death

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Vikings linebackers rip NFL's statement after George Floyd's death

The NFL's statement in the wake of George Floyd's death in police custody drew criticism from around the sports world, with Minnesota Vikings linebackers Eric Kendricks and Anthony Barr being the latest to condemn the league for its hypocrisy.

Both linebackers sent a series of identical tweets condemning the league's statement and lack of past action and asking for help to enact change.

While the NFL's statement claims it is looking to address the systemic issues together, that flies in the face of their treatment of former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, Kaepernick began kneeling during the national anthem in 2016 in protest of police brutality against African-Americans. Kaepernick last played in the NFL in 2016. After opting out of his contract with the 49ers, he was not signed by another team and he has alleged that NFL owners conspired to keep him out of the league. Kaepernick settled a collusion lawsuit with the NFL in 2019.

Kaepernick's peaceful protest has received renewed attention in the wake of Floyd's death in police custody as citizens march across the United States to protest police brutality and systemic racism.

Floyd, a 46-year old African-American man died in police custody and citizens filmed Derek Chauvin, a white Minneapolis police officer placing his knee on Floyd's neck for over eight minutes. Floyd told Chauvin and the three other officers who were watching that he couldn't breathe and asked Chauvin to let up, but Chauvin kept his knee pressed into Floyd's neck for over three minutes after he became unconscious. It was later announced Floyd died in police custody. Chauvin was arrested Friday and will be charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. The other officers have not been arrested but still could face charges.

While the NFL's statement was tone-deaf, several organizations from around the sports world have given thoughtful statements and put their money where their mouth is.

49ers owner Jed York donated $1 million to organizations dedicated to social change.

"We started some social justice work and using that term when Colin started his protest," York told NFL Media's Jim Trotter. "I think we'd always been working in this area but it was clear to label it social justice. ... I think the piece that we missed in 2016, and it's a fairly simple piece, I don't know if anybody actually addressed what the issue was, and we're trying to fight racism in this country.

"I think that's what we need to clearly call out, and you can't defeat something if you can't admit that's actually what you're fighting." 

[RELATED: Jackson insists Kap owed apology by 'fake' NFL]

Raiders owner Mark Davis issued a powerful statement condemning the "murder" of Floyd and has been meeting with officials in Henderson, Nevada to listen, learn and try to be part of positive change.

"If they have something to say, I'll stand beside them," Davis told ESPN. "I won't stand behind them. I'll stand beside them. And if there's something I don't know, I'm happy to listen to them. We've got to find a solution."

Steph Curry, Chris Long and Steve Kerr all have called for white people to get uncomfortable, speak up and be part of the solution. Kerr and Long both spoke on the importance of star white quarterbacks like Tom Brady, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers speaking out on the matter. 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman echoed the importance of white quarterbacks speaking up at this moment.

The criticism of the NFL is warranted given their treatment of Kaepernick, Eric Reid and others who knelt to protest police brutality and systemic racism. Kaepernick's protest wasn't accepted by the league as it should have been. His action was born out of the desire to enact change. He not only sacrificed his career (to this point) but he also has donated more than $1 million to organizations fighting for social change. The NFL could have listened, acknowledge and amplified Kaepernick's message. Instead, it chose to do the opposite.

The statement itself was tone-deaf and their inaction in the fight against systemic racism will always be louder than four paragraphs on a tweet.

[49ERS INSIDER PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]