The 49ers' blockbuster trade to move up to the No. 3 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, which they used to select quarterback Trey Lance, caught a lot of people off guard. Jimmy Garoppolo was not one of those people.
General manager John Lynch called to inform Garoppolo of the move the 49ers were planning to make before the news broke, and the 29-year-old starting quarterback had an open conversation with the man who engineered the trade that brought him to San Francisco on Halloween of 2017.
"We were pretty honest with each other," Garoppolo told CBS Sports Radio's Damon Amendolara on Tuesday. "It was one of those things where I know [Lance] is going to come in here, there's going to be some competition between us like there was with me and Tom [Brady] in New England. But at the end of the day, like my dad was just saying, all you can ask for is the opportunity. So, once they said you'll have the opportunity to start this year and fight it out, I was all for it. I'm ready for the competition and that's what we're here for."
Garoppolo is 24-8 as a starter and led the 49ers to a 13-3 record and a berth in Super Bowl LIV in his only full season as a starter. But he also has missed 23 games over the last three seasons, including 10 games last year when he was sidelined with two separate high ankle sprains.
For Garoppolo, there are no hard feelings toward the 49ers. He understands the decision and knows it all comes with being an NFL quarterback.
"No, not really," Garoppolo said when asked if the 49ers' decision and process upset him. "Like my dad was saying, my dad is an electrician, I grew up in a blue-collar household. It's one of those things where you got to roll with the punches and whenever an opportunity presents itself you have to be able to take advantage of it. That's kind of what I've done throughout my entire career and that's what I'm going to keep doing.
"Like my dad said, nothing is going to be handed to me. Nothing is going to be handed to anyone in this league. You just have to go in there and work."