Jimmy G. Jimmy GQ. How about Jimmy GQB1? Whatever you call him, you can call Jimmy Garoppolo the quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers.
After officially signing his 5-year, $137.5 million contract, a very happy trio of Garoppolo, John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan met the press.
“I wanted to get this deal done as fast as possible,” said Garoppolo. “…[I]t’s only going to help our team going forward, going into free agency, and it’s 75 degrees out here. It’s not a snowstorm like Chicago…It’s a lot better here…There’s other factors that go into it, too. That’s a big part. And so it’s just, I don’t know, I wanted to be here I was excited to be here, and I’m happy we got it done as fast as we did.”
Levi’s Stadium is a whole new world. A world of possibility. A world of excitement. A world that feels like it could house a winning franchise. With the dream team of Garoppolo, Lynch, and Shanahan all committed to at least five more years here, it’s always sunny in Santa Clara.
“This is a big piece, but one of the reasons this was the urgency, if there was some, for us, heading into free agency, this is a big deal,” said Lynch.” It’s 75 degrees and sunny outside, we’ve got this guy, who wouldn’t want to be here? We want to become that. We want to become a destination where everyone wants to be. We’ve got a long way to go. We were 6-10, okay, so this is a big day for us, but we have a long way to go, and we’re fully aware of that.”
Garoppolo also knows there’s work to be done, but from the day he arrived in Santa Clara, the quarterback felt pretty good about where he was playing football.
“The team, the acceptance that they had of me when I first got here from the get-go, the coaching staff, Kyle and Rich [Scangarello], just it was a very welcoming environment, and I really liked that,” Garoppolo said. “We had some success down the stretch, and you could see that pieces were falling into place. We’ve got a long way to go, but I think we’re moving in the right direction.”
Garoppolo is not the only member of the red and gold who was set to be a free agent. Defensive lineman Cassus Marsh signed a two-year deal earlier this week, but with Eric Reid, Carlos Hyde, and Daniel Kilgore set to hit the market, the 49ers have decisions to make.
“We’re going to continue to try to re-sign our own players that we think are a part of this puzzle, and some of those we have to let go free agency and see where the market shakes out,” said Lynch. “We’re getting ready for the Draft. We’re getting ready for free agency. This thing always is moving. That’s great.”
For the organization and its fans, winning will be truly great. As much excitement and love that was in the room today, everyone knows that the true prize is a Lombardi trophy.
“This isn’t the celebration day,” said CEO Jed York. “This is the beginning of a lot of hard work. That’s what I’m excited about. I’m excited to get back to work and know that we have a chance to go where we want to go, but it’s only going to get there if we put in the work and all of these guys put in the work.”
York even poked a little fun at himself, when asked if this press conference was more enjoyable than some of the others he’s needed to have this time of year.
“It’s weird because I rarely make mistakes.” Bravo, Jed. Bravo.
Maybe today isn’t the true celebration day. Maybe that comes on a Sunday in February in the near future, but for now, Shanahan summed it up best.
“…[G]uys, I’m excited. I think obviously I know our players are. I know our fans are. I know our coaches are. Excited to get everyone back. We’ve had a little time off. We’ve been away from guys…[A]s soon as phase one starts of the offseason, we’ve got a lot of work to do. We know we haven’t accomplished anything yet, but we’re real excited about these pieces we got, and can’t wait to get started.”
The Niners have a little time before the offseason program begins, and for Jimmy’s part, he’s going to enjoy this time just a bit.
“Talking to my brothers about it the last 24 hours, flying here and everything, if you would have asked me as a little kid if I thought this was a reality, probably not,” the QB said. “But you always dream about being that NFL quarterback and everything, and this is just taking another step in that direction, I guess.”
For a team that’s going brick by brick, one of the most important ones is taken care of. Go Niners!Don’t forget to subscribe to my weekly podcast and YouTube channel. Also, make sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram @49ersfangirl. Go Niners!