Jimmy Garoppolo to return in time for playoffs? It’s possible

Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

The 49ers thought they had lost Jimmy Garoppolo to a season-ending foot injury, but recent reports suggest he could return during the playoffs.

The San Francisco 49ers were facing the cold hard reality of their third-string quarterback, Brock Purdy, being tabbed with helming the offense for the rest of the season in the wake of Jimmy Garoppolo‘s season-ending foot injury suffered during the Niners’ Week 13 win over the Miami Dolphins last Sunday.

Months removed from No. 1 quarterback Trey Lance‘s season-ending ankle injury way back in Week 2, it’d be fair to wonder if the football gods had it out for San Francisco.

The 49ers thought Garoppolo’s injury would be of the season-ending variety, a Lisfranc injury that would have kept him out of whatever postseason run head coach Kyle Shanahan’s squad might enjoy.

However, the Niners were gifted with some better news on Tuesday.

Jimmy Garoppolo could return in time for playoffs, per report

On Tuesday, ESPN’s Adam Schefter cited sources that said Garoppolo did not suffer a Lisfranc injury, won’t need surgery and that the quarterback “could have a chance to return in 7-8 weeks.”

Read More: Should 49ers sign Baker Mayfield to replace Jimmy Garoppolo?

This is incredible news for San Francisco. While Purdy generally played well enough to earn some lofty praise from his fellow teammates in relief of Jimmy G, the difference between the two quarterbacks’ experience and talent levels is massive.

Looking at the timeline, the 8-4 49ers would have to get into the playoffs, to begin with, and that might be easy enough amid a weakened NFC. Assuming Purdy manages to proverbially “steer the ship” without being asked to do too much, letting the Niners’ stout defense do much of the work, that shouldn’t be too tall a task.

However, Garoppolo’s anticipated timeline would likely put him back in the mix for the divisional round of the playoffs.

If San Francisco doesn’t get a first-round bye by claiming the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoff picture, it’d have to win its Wild Card game to have a chance at getting Garoppolo back in the fray.

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