The quarterback is definitely the most important position in the Nation Football League. Can we all agree with that? Let’s face if your favorite team doesn’t have a franchise QB you might be rooting for the Cleveland Browns. In the last few seasons the San Francisco 49ers were looking to be heading into a similar direction. Yes some front office debacles, bad coaching hires and too much trust in former general manger Trent Baalke all factored into a once promising possible decade in the hands of head coach Jim Harbaugh, to three very disappointing seasons. Today the 49ers have seemed to have dusted themselves off from an 8-8 record in 2015, 5-11 record in 2015, 2-14 record in 2016 and ugly start to its 2017 season. With a new general manager in John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan stepping into year two of the careers with the 49ers, they now look to the 2018 season with much promise, they have the number nine pick in the 2018 NFL draft and they have Jimmy G ready to take the NFL by storm.
On October 30th, 2017, the rookie 49ers brain trust of Lynch and Shanahan, brokered a deal with the New England Patriots to acquire quarterback Jimmy Garroppolo for a second round pick in the 2018 NFL draft. As die hard 49er fan I was very intrigued by this move. The 49ers are a franchise in which quarterback is a position of great history and great expectations. Joe Montana took his teams of the 1980’s to four super bowls and walked out with four wins, Steve Young would follow Montana and help the 49ers win their fifth and most recent Super Bowl championship and in recent years, Colin Kaepernick would go on to succeed in the playoffs but ultimately failed to win when it mattered most. In the 2013 NFC championship game, Kaepernick’s final playoff pass attempt was tipped in the air by former Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman and landed in the hands of as well former Seahawk, linebacker Malcolm Smith, Super Bowl 48’s MVP. The two defensive stars for Seattle responsible for this play and arguably the greatest moment of the Seattle Seahawks, sent the 49ers into an abyss that seemed never ending. In 2018 both Malcolm Smith and Richard Sherman will now bring a veteran presence to a young and up and coming 49ers defense while the offense will be anchored by Jimmy G.
Now back to this intriguing move for Jimmy G, I had many questions. Who is in fact is Jimmy G? While I got to see Colin Kaepernick, Blaine Gabbert and Brian Hoyer take the 49ers to top five draft picks, from afar 49ers fans and football fans across the country caught wind of this Jimmy G when Tom Brady was handed a four-game suspension to start the 2016 NFL season. In week one of 2016 Jimmy Garoppolo began the march for the Patriots, with a very impressive win against an Arizona Cardinals team fresh off of a NFC Championship game appearance. Then the next week before leaving the game against the Miami Dolphins due to injury, Garroppolo continued his good play. All football fans could was watch from afar as the Patriots seemed to have found the heir apparent to Tom Brady’s throne and all we could was just watch in envy. Then October 30th 2017 happened. Could it be true? Well after starting the season 1-10, Jimmy took the reigns of the 49ers starting quarter back job in week 13, against his hometown team of the Chicago Bears, and then after a 15-14 victory, 49ers fans across the Bay Area and the globe answered the question. It is true. We finally have a quarterback.
Starting a season 0-9 after three back-to-back-to-back seasons of sub par football doesn’t feel good. Finishing the season 6-10 shouldn’t have felt as good as it did with dramatic wins against the Bears and Tennessee Titans, convincing wins against the Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars and the Los Angeles Rams. Jimmy G continued his 2-0 starts with the Patriots, by helping the 49ers win the final five game. In doing so the 49ers would go on to reward Jimmy Garoppolo with a five-year $137.5 million extension with $74 million at the start of the 2018 NFL off season. And with now with their franchise quarterback locked up, the 49ers seem ready to re-introduce themselves as an NFL power house once more. Gone may be the glory days of Joe Montana, Steve Young and Colin Kaepernick and as well the darkest hours of Blaine Gabbert and Brian Hoyer. The Jimmy G. Effect is ready to take place for a full 16-game schedule. Now must see what days the Jimmy Garoppolo era will bring.