Apparently, Jimmy Garoppolo is even competitive when it comes to his rehabilitation.
The 49ers quarterback, who suffered a season-ending knee ligament tear in just the third game of the 2018 season, reportedly is on track to be a full participant this spring in the team’s organized team activities (OTAs).
One of the reasons is, he and running back Jerick McKinnon, who lost all of 2018 to injury, have been working out together and competing to see who can be the fittest and healthiest for the 2019 season after both having knee surgery.
“Jimmy is vigorously trying to catch ‘Jet’ (McKinnon), who is trying to separate from Jimmy, and so there’s competition going on as well,” general manager John Lynch told Ian Rapoport of NFL.com recently. “I think both those guys will tell you that’s really helped them, (having) somebody to go through it with.”
When Garoppolo was healthy, going into the 2018 season, the 49ers were a dark-horse pick to contend in the NFC West. Without him, however, the team stumbled to a 4-12 season. There were multiple other problems – with injuries, the defense and inconsistencies in the receiver and blocking groups – but the loss of the young quarterback sucked the energy from the team early.
Now, Lynch is hoping Garoppolo comes back strong, learns from watching from the sidelines in 2018 and gets to play a full schedule as an NFL starter for the first time this coming season.
“Jimmy is doing great,” said Lynch. “He’s back in Santa Clara at our facility and just really vigorously attacking his rehab.”