At the 2017 trade deadline, the New England Patriots sent backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to the San Francisco 49ers in return for a 2018 second round draft pick. It was a surprising move at the time and one that reflects how the team thinks about starting quarterback Tom Brady's future.
With Brady showing absolutely no signs of slowing down anytime soon, Garoppolo getting his chance in New England could have been years away – something that is not the case in San Francisco. In fact, the former second round draft pick will get his first start for the franchise on Sunday against the Chicago Bears as the 49ers announced yesterday:
#49ers Head Coach Kyle Shanahan met with the team’s quarterbacks today and informed them that Jimmy Garoppolo will start this Sunday in Chicago. Shanahan will meet with the media next on Wednesday afternoon. #SFvsCHI
Since getting traded to San Francisco, Garoppolo served as the backup to C.J. Beathard. In this role, he appeared in one game and threw two passes, completing both for 18 yards and a touchdown. Now, it appears the time has come for the 26-year old to show that he is a) worthy of the draft selection the 49ers sent to New England and b) a potential long-term solution at quarterback.
Patriots fans would probably watch this one closely if not for their team's game in Buffalo, which starts at the same time on Sunday.