San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch put the kibosh on any rumors of a potential reunion between quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and the team that drafted him, the New England Patriots.
“No. Not at all,” Lynch said Wednesday. “I really believe that.”
Garoppolo seemed like a good fit for the QB-needy Patriots if the 49ers found a better starting option. Unless the 49ers can trade for Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson, that seems unlikely at this point.
Lynch did say the 49ers need to upgrade their backup role since Garoppolo has been injury-prone since joining San Francisco.
“Being available is a big part of this thing,” Lynch said. “So we — probably as a stated goal — we have to insulate ourselves better. We’ve got to have better options if he’s not there.
“I’ve watched people go through this in their careers where they struggled early. It happened to me early, and then I went eight years without missing a practice. So I believe things can happen, and I believe they will for him. I really believe that Jimmy is our guy.”
That honestly might be difficult, because 49ers second-stringer Nick Mullens has been an above-average backup in his NFL career. San Francisco hasn’t won many games with him, however.
The 49ers could look to add a free-agent quarterback like Ryan Fitzpatrick, Jacoby Brissett, Tyrod Taylor or Andy Dalton to back up Garoppolo. They also could potentially trade for Las Vegas Raiders backup Marcus Mariota.
Some of those same names are in the running to be signed by the Patriots as a starting option.