SANTA CLARA -- Jimmy Garoppolo has been down this road before, and it's one he’d rather forget.
The 49ers quarterback didn't return to the field after halftime in Sunday's 28-21 loss to the Seattle Seahawks at Levi's Stadium. Garoppolo sustained a calf injury during the first offensive series, and though he played the entire first half, he was unable to continue.
Coach Kyle Shanahan told reporters that he believed the veteran quarterback’s calf was stepped on, and Garoppolo confirmed that was what it felt like, but he wasn't sure. Garoppolo explained the pain started to travel down his leg, but he doesn't believe it's an Achilles injury.
Garoppolo was emotional when he explained how the situation unfolded during the game.
“It sucked,” Garoppolo said after the game. “In between series, I could feel it tighten up. Thought I could gut it out. Tried to for the first half, but it’s just tough, man. Been in this situation too many times, and it’s getting real old. Just one of those things. It’s part of the business, though.”
Unable to use his calf to push off during his throws, Garoppolo knew his upper-body strength alone wasn't enough to be an asset to the 49ers' offense on the field. He later was seen standing on the sideline with a wrap around his right calf, which was keeping it warm in case he was called upon in an emergency situation.
Prior to his injury, Garoppolo had led the 49ers to a fast start. He completed 14 of 23 passes for 165 yards and one touchdown with one interception in the first half.
Having played a complete season only once in his NFL career, Garoppolo is trying to stay positive, but it was clear he was trying to hold it together after the game.
“I’m a pretty positive person, so I’m trying to stay positive with it,” Garoppolo said. “I’m going to take it in stride. Tomorrow will answer a lot of the questions. It’s just tough. I put a lot into this and I hate to have this happen, but hopefully it is just a small hiccup in the road.
“It feels like just the calf right now. I’m hopeful it will just be a couple of weeks or something like that.”
If Garoppolo is cleared to play, Shanahan indicated it again will be the veteran under center in Week 5 against the Arizona Cardinals. If not, Trey Lance will assume starting duties at quarterback. While Lance ideally could learn without needing to carry the team, Shanahan will prepare him for the task at hand.
“We've been playing with a rookie running back since the second play of the first game,” Shanahan said. “We've got a rookie quarterback right now, and hopefully Jimmy's better and not as bad as we think, but Trey is here for a reason. You want to give him the time. You want him to be fully ready, but you don't always have that luxury. That's what we'll find out in the next couple of days.”