Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

Kyle Shanahan sounds like he’d be interested in Jimmy Garoppolo

New England Patriots Practice

HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 02: Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the New England Patriots works out during a practice session ahead of Super Bowl LI on February 2, 2017 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

Getty Images

On Sunday, Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan and Patriots backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo will be on opposite sidelines in Super Bowl LI. Next season, could they be on the same team in San Francisco?

Shanahan, the next head coach of the 49ers, told the Cleveland Plain Dealer that he liked Garoppolo heading into the 2014 NFL draft, when Shanahan was the Browns’ offensive coordinator and they chose Johnny Manziel in the first round. The Patriots took Garoppolo in the second round that year.

Of course, it’s easy for Shanahan to say now that he liked Garoppolo better than Manziel. When a draft pick fails as spectacularly as Manziel, everyone in an organization is quick to deflect the blame. But Shanahan says he thought heading into the draft that Garoppolo was the real deal.

“He was a very good thrower,’' Shanahan said of Garoppolo. “Tough guy, kept his eyes down the field, could get rid of the ball fast. Really liked the person. Had a chance to go out to dinner with him and stuff. He played at Eastern Illinois, and it was a different type of offense where you can’t always evaluate with how quick they get rid of the ball. But I really thought he was a very intelligent, tough player with a good throwing motion.”

How much would the 49ers be willing to give up in a trade to acquire Garoppolo from the Patriots? That remains to be seen. But the Patriots will undoubtedly field many offers for Garoppolo in the offseason. And one may come from the 49ers.