With the NBA trade deadline on Thursday, it was easy to miss the other big sports news of the day. While the Cleveland Cavaliers were completely rebuilding their roster for a possible NBA playoff run, the San Francisco 49ers were busy solidifying what made them contend at the end of the 2017 NFL season. Initially reported by NFL Network reporter Mike Garafolo and later confirmed by ESPN, the San Francisco 49ers have signed quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to a brand-new long-term contract that makes him the highest-paid player in the NFL right now.
The 49ers Deal With Jimmy Garoppolo
The San Francisco 49ers offered Jimmy Garoppolo a contract that will pay him $137.5 million over five seasons. This deal makes Garoppolo the highest-paid player in the NFL when it comes to a per-season average, with the 49ers quarterback earning $27.5 million a year. The contract also has guarantees that total $90 million over the first three seasons.
The 49ers made it official on Thursday when they made the contract announcement. Garoppolo, 26, has only started seven games in his NFL career. On the other hand, Matthew Stafford was paid $500,000 less per year average last season, with 125 games under his belt. Aaron Rodgers, who has won a Super Bowl and has played for 13 seasons, averages only $22 million a season for the Green Bay Packers.
A press conference has been announced for Friday. Jimmy Garoppolo took to Instagram to post a photo celebrating the news of his new San Francisco 49ers contract.
The Future Of The San Francisco 49ers
This deal is a huge endorsement from the San Francisco 49ers for Jimmy Garoppolo. With only seven starts, the 49ers are hoping his performance at the end of the 2017 NFL season is just a sign of things to come for the young quarterback.
Garoppolo is entering the fifth season of his NFL career. The former Eastern Illinois quarterback spent his first three seasons backing up Tom Brady with the New England Patriots. He threw a total of 63 completions in those three seasons before the Patriots traded him to the 49ers.
Garoppolo spent time backing up Brian Hoyer and even watched C.J. Beathard start in San Francisco before he got his chance to play. The 49ers finally started Garoppolo for the first time on Dec. 3 against the Chicago Bears. The 49ers were 1-10 when they turned the keys over to their new quarterback.
Jimmy Garoppolo started and won the final five games of the season for the San Francisco 49ers. San Francisco scored 144 points in those final five games after scoring only 187 points total in their first 11 games.
Garoppolo finished with 1,560 passing yards and a 67.4 completion percentage. He threw seven touchdowns and five interceptions and will have to cut down on the turnovers to make a difference for the 49ers. However, with head coach Kyle Shanahan turning Kirk Cousins into an NFL star and then coaching Matt Ryan to the best season of his career, the San Francisco 49ers have high hopes for their new, very rich, starting quarterback.