49ers coach Kyle Shanahan: 'You can feel a little different buzz' with Jimmy Garoppolo
Garoppolo won't start right away, but he will probably get a chance to do so down the stretch
The San Francisco 49ers have generally been a pretty hopeless team this season. They're 0-8, tied with the Browns for the worst record in the NFL, and they have the league's second-worst point differential. It's not like their winless record is a giant fluke.
They've gotten some truly dreadful quarterback play this year from Brian Hoyer and C.J. Beathard, with the duo combining to complete just 56 percent of its passes and throwing more interceptions than touchdowns. Neither looked anything like the quarterback of the future, and so at the trade deadline, the Niners swung a trade for former Patriots backup Jimmy Garoppolo.
Now coach Kyle Shanahan says there's a different kind of energy in the building.
"When players see that on Monday and they come in on Wednesday, you can feel a little different buzz," Shanahan said, per NBC Bay Area. "I think we had a great week of practice. I think C.J. had his best week of practice. On Wednesday, we only had two balls hit the ground. We haven't done that all year. So I think it did give us a little bit of juice and some energy. Jimmy has fit in really well in that quarterback room. He's fit in real well with the guys, and I think the guys see the talent out there, also. I don't think anyone's trying to rush it or knows when it's going to happen, but people can see we have a few good quarterbacks in our building."
While excitement abounds, Shanahan also noted that it'll take a little bit for Garoppolo to get up to speed and he won't start right away.
"That's something I'm going to take day-by-day," he said. "It's not just about Jimmy. It's about our team, too. I want to make sure I put Jimmy in a position where I believe he has a chance to be successful. That's a huge challenge for a guy when he's hopping into the middle of this year. We're not the healthiest right now. That's not all that's going into the decision. I got to wait until Jimmy's ready. And I got to wait until I think when he goes in, he has a chance to successful. If that time comes or when it comes, then we won't hesitate to do that."
The smart money is on Garoppolo at least getting a chance to start a handful of games before the end of the season. He's a free agent at the end of the year and the 49ers have to see for themselves whether there's enough there for them to commit to a long-term contract, or whether using the franchise tag and giving him another year might be the better option.
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