One thing is for certain, and it's the 49ers selecting a quarterback with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft Thursday night. What isn't certain, is the immediate future for current starting QB Jimmy Garoppolo.
After the 49ers made the trade for the No. 3 overall pick, it became clear that Garoppolo is not a part of the teams' long-term plans at the position. During the first press conference after the trade, both head coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch doubled down, claiming that Garoppolo will be the 49ers' starting quarterback this season.
Having Garoppolo around while a rookie QB develops throughout the season allows the 49ers to compete with their Super Bowl-caliber roster while the future at the position is waiting in the wings. With increased speculation regarding Garoppolo's job security with the team in recent weeks, the 49ers might be inclined to move on from Garoppolo depending on which player they select.
After the move to pick No. 3 was finalized, there were reports that the 49ers were asking for a first-round pick in a trade for Garoppolo.
NBC's Peter King wrote in his Football Morning in America column that he wouldn't be surprised if the 49ers end up accepting less than a first-round pick for Garoppolo.
"It won’t surprise me if the Niners make Jimmy Garoppolo more available than he’s been," King wrote. "In other words, instead of trying to get a first-round pick for him, maybe considering taking a two for him. I wonder if the Patriots would deal the 46th pick in the draft, or their second-rounder in 2022, for their old friend."
When it comes to speculation regarding a Garoppolo trade, the Patriots have been far and away the most talked-about team as a potential suitor.
Lynch and Shanahan held their second pre-draft press conference Monday afternoon. Lynch was asked about Garoppolo's status as the team prepares to draft his predecessor.
“Jimmy's been a pro," Lynch said. "He really has. I just spoke to him over the weekend and he's here. He's taking part in our virtual meetings, plans on being at the workouts. And, Jimmy has been completely professional as he always has been with us."
Shanahan was asked if he was certain if Garoppolo would remain with the team through the draft and gave a less direct answer.
"I can't guarantee that anybody in the world will be alive Sunday, so I can't guarantee who will be on our roster on Sunday," Shanahan said. "So, that goes for all of us."
Interpret that how you may, and prepare for three more days of rumors and speculation.