The 49ers pulled off a blockbuster trade Friday when they acquired the No. 3 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft in a trade with the Miami Dolphins.
Conventional wisdom says the 49ers pulled the trigger in order to draft one of the top quarterbacks in this year's class, and that Jimmy Garoppolo's time in Santa Clara is running out.
While the 49ers almost certainly have their eyes on a young signal-caller, that doesn't mean they're planning on trading Garoppolo. In fact, Garoppolo remains part of the 49ers' plans for 2021, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported shortly after the trade news broke.
A source confirmed to NBC Sports Bay Area's Jennifer Lee Chan that the 49ers have no plans to deal Garoppolo.
NFL Media's Steve Wyche said he spoke with 49ers general manager John Lynch, who told him he called Garoppolo to tell him this doesn't change his standing with the team.
"Yes, we decided to go ahead and do this. Once it was finalized, the first thing we did was call Jimmy Garoppolo to let him know he's still in our plans," Wyche said Lynch told him.
If the 49ers' plan is to draft either BYU's Zach Wilson, Ohio State's Justin Fields or North Dakota State's Trey Lance, then keeping Garoppolo would be their best option. Both Fields and Lance are extremely talented but would benefit from being able to sit behind Garoppolo for a season before taking over in 2022.
Garoppolo also has a no-trade clause in his contract, which could make it difficult to deal him if they wanted to go that route.
San Francisco also knows the importance of having a good backup quarterback, so putting Fields, Lance or Zach Wilson behind Garoppolo in 2021 does make a lot of sense.
The 49ers' ability to re-sign most of their top talent in free agency, most notably left tackle Trent Williams, gave them the freedom and flexibility to make a bold move to climb up the draft board and put them in position to select their next franchise quarterback.
Whether it's Lance, Fields or Wilson, the 49ers should have their quarterback future sewed up after the 2021 NFL Draft. But, at least for the moment, it still will be Garoppolo's team this year.