SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Now that he’s back in the role of San Francisco 49ers starting quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo have a lot to do this week. But before he could fully dive back in, he made sure to contact the man he was replacing: an injured quarterback. Trey Lance.
Speaking to the media Thursday for the first time since stepping in for Lance in last week’s win against the Seattle Seahawks, Garoppolo said he spoke with Lance a few times this week and also interacted with him via Zoom when Lance called to participate. . meetings
Garoppolo’s advice? Try to stay as positive as possible.
“I heard [defensive end Nick] Bosa’s hitter the other day and he put it pretty well because there’s a moment where you feel like your life is over and you feel like you can never get back to where I was,” Garoppolo said. “But that passes and you’re has to hit a point where it passes and you mentally move on from that. There will be obstacles for him to overcome but I’ve been around Trey for a few years now. He’s a tough guy, so he’ll be fine.”
On Monday morning, Lance had surgery at Stanford hospital to repair a broken fibula and ligament damage in his right ankle. The 49ers have expressed optimism that Lance will be ready to go in time for the start of the 2023 NFL season.
“He’s doing as well as you can,” coach Kyle Shanahan said. “Trey’s been great. Some guys, we’ve all talked to him a lot, and he’s trying to get to the game this week. I don’t think he’ll be able to until the swelling goes down, but he’ll be back and a part of us sooner rather than later .”
After returning to the field Sunday, Garoppolo said it was like “riding a bike,” but he also didn’t have much time to reflect on the long, strange journey that brought him back to the job he’s held for most of the past five years .
Asked Thursday if that trip was surreal, Garoppolo said it has and it hasn’t.
“Just the way things worked out, it’s pretty crazy,” Garoppolo said. “But I don’t know, everything happens for a reason, I’m a big believer in that and it’s just another chance.”
For now, Garoppolo said he’s just “trying to stay in the moment” and get back used to running San Francisco’s offense. Garoppolo said last week’s game felt similar to how he did in 2017 when he was first traded to the Niners and didn’t know the offense.
Because he was new at the time and taking over a team with only one win at that point, Garoppolo had more freedom to improvise. This week, he got his first reps with the starting offense since before the NFC Championship Game in January.
It’s been nearly eight months since then and Garoppolo has felt all of that after undergoing right shoulder surgery and the corresponding rehab. And now, in circumstances no one wanted, a sense of normality has returned.
“Long layoff, no OTAs, no training camp, it’s been a different kind of year and I’ve been in some weird situations here obviously,” Garoppolo said. “But it has some good and some bad. The shoulder feels good and obviously that’s No. 1, so when I felt better physically, the rest of the things kind of fell into place.”