NFL

Kyle Shanahan not optimistic about Jimmy Garoppolo possibly returning for the 49ers

By Sports Desk December 07, 2022

Kyle Shanahan is not counting on seeing Jimmy Garoppolo back on the field for the San Francisco 49ers this season.

Quarterback Garoppolo broke his foot in the first quarter of Sunday's 33-17 win over the Miami Dolphins and head coach Shanahan confirmed a report from Tuesday that he did not suffer a Lisfranc injury that would require surgery.

Without the need for surgery and without any ligament damage, the timeline to recover from a fractured foot is in the seven-to-eight week range.

It was then being reported that he could be able to return for a Divisional Round game or the NFC Championship game, should the 49ers make it that far.

While his foot may be healed by the middle of January, Shanahan said he is not going to be ready to get back on the field from such an injury. 

'"There's that way outside chance late in the playoffs or something like that,'' Shanahan said on Wednesday. 

"'But it's just an outside chance. I'm not really real optimistic about that. But they didn't rule it out.

"'I know it's a serious injury that will likely keep him out for the year. It's really good news that there's no ligament damage or anything so he'll be fine once the broken bone heals.''

There is also the fact to consider if the 49ers are still alive in the second or third week of the playoffs, that Garoppolo’s replacement, Brock Purdy, is more than likely playing well enough.

After Garoppolo was injured against the Dolphins, Purdy capped his first drive with a three-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Juszczyk to put the 49ers ahead.

He threw another three-yard TD pass to Christian McCaffrey, and finished the day 25 of 37 for 210 yards with two touchdowns and an interception against a defense that attempted to unsettle him with blitzes.

Purdy, who was the last pick of this year's draft, had just attempted nine passes in his career prior to facing the Dolphins, and now gets a full week of preparation in practice with San Francisco's deep group of playmakers led by McCaffrey, Deebo Samuel, George Kittle and Brandon Aiyuk.

''We're trying not to make a drastic change,'' Shanahan said. ''They have a similar skill set. We got a lot of confidence in Brock. We've seen him in practice. That's why we were confident enough. 

"He hasn't played a ton football, so there is some unknown out there. But we know he's got the ability to do it. We know he's got the mentality to do it.''

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