Call me crazy, but it seems the 49ers are showcasing Jimmy Garoppolo for a trade.
It seems painfully obvious. Today, the 49ers invited more than 20,000 fans to Levi's Stadium to watch Garoppolo practice. He was the star -- he threw 24 passes, while rookie Trey Lance, who had been the main attraction at training camp until today, threw only 18 passes.
Garoppolo took all the reps with the starters, and got to face a first-string defense that was missing it's five best defensive linemen -- Nick Bosa, Dee Ford, Javon Kinlaw, Arik Armstead and Samson Ebukam -- plus starting linebacker Azeez Al-Shaair and starting safety Jaquiski Tartt. That's seven of its best players who were out.
Seems like the 49ers were setting up Garoppolo to look his best. He got to stand in the pocket without moving. And he still couldn't throw a touchdown pass until the 49ers benched starting cornerbacks Jason Verrett and Emmanuel Moseley as well.
It seems the 49ers want to pump up Garoppolo's stock as much as possible so they can trade him to, say, the Houston Texans once they trade Deshaun Watson. I'm just guessing.
Here's the blow by blow of each quarterback's morning.
1. Fumbled the snap and the defense recovered. This was Garoppolo's third fumbled snap of camp.
2. Completed a 15-yard pass over the middle to Brandon Aiyuk running a curl route against Jason Verrett.
3. Completed a 10-yard pass to Kevin White running a dig route from left to right.
4. Completed a pass in the left flat to Kyle Juszczyk who turned upfield and gained 10 yards.
5. Underthrew a pass to Aiyuk running an out route and almost got intercepted by Verrett.
6. Threw an incomplete pass up the seam to George Kittle, who was double covered by Fred Warner and Jimmie Ward. Bad decision by Garoppolo. Ward almost intercepted the pass.
7. Completed a 5-yard pass to Kittle running a stick route over the middle.
8. Threw an incomplete pass that hit rookie running back Trey Sermon in the facemask. Good throw. Bad drop.
9. Completed a 5-yard pass to Raheem Mostert over the middle.
10. Completed a 10-yard pass to Jauan Jennings running an out from the slot against K'Waun Williams.
11. Rolled left and dumped a two-yard pass to Kittle on 2nd and 5.
12. Threw an incomplete pass to Aiyuk running a quick slant on 3rd and 2. Verrett knocked down the pass.
13. Rolled left and dumped a pass in the flat to tight end Charlie Woerner, who ran for 15 yards.
14. Completed a 10-yard pass to Aiyuk running a dig.
15. Completed a 10-yard pass to Deebo Samuel running a dig.
16. Threw the ball out of the back of the end zone.
17. Threw an incomplete pass to Samuel running a quick slant on 3rd and goal from the 5. Verrett broke up the pass.
18. Threw an incomplete pass behind Mostert in the right flat.
19. Completed a 10-yard pass over the middle to Mohamed Sanu who ran for 20 yards after the catch. The pass was behind Sanu, but he spun around and caught it anyway.
20. Completed a 5-yard pass to Mostert running a quick out route.
21. Completed a 5-yard pass to Sanu running a curl over the middle.
22. Threw to Aiyuk in the end zone and got his pass broken up by backup cornerback B.W. Webb.
23. Completed a pass to Kittle in the right flat for 5 yards.
24. Threw an incomplete pass behind Sanu who was running a slant route into the end zone and was open.
25. Threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Kittle who ran a fade route against 5-foot-10 rookie cornerback Deommodore Lenoir.
This was Garoppolo's final throw of the morning. He finished 15 for 24 with one touchdown and one fumble.
1. Completed a 20-yard pass to Aiyuk running a deep crossing route from right to left after getting sacked by a defensive lineman who beat right tackle Tom Compton.
2. Completed a shovel pass to Richie James Jr. running a jet sweep.
3. Threw an incomplete pass high over the head of Aiyuk running a deep crossing route from left to right.
4. Completed a 15-yard pass to Aiyuk running a post route.
5. Completed a 5-yard check down to Trent Sherfield.
6. Completed a 5-yard pass to Ross Dwelley after getting sacked.
7. Tried to throw a screen pass over the head of a defensive lineman in his face and got his pass knocked down.
8. Completed a 10-yard pass to Samuel running a curl.
9. Completed a 20-yard pass to Sherfield running a deep out route. This is a pass Garoppolo can't complete. Lance threw it with power and anticipation.
10. Completed an 8-yard pass to Sherfield running a quick out on 1st and 10.
11. Threw the ball away in the face of pressure on 3rd and 2.
12. Ran a zone read to his left and gained 5 yards.
13. Threw an incomplete pass to James running an out route on 3rd and 8. Dontae Johnson broke up the pass.
14. Threw the ball away in the face of instant pressure on 1st and 10.
15. Ran a zone read to the left and gained 10 yards on 2nd and 10.
16. Threw an incomplete pass to Jauan Jennings running a dig route on 1st and 10. Mark Fields broke up the pass.
17. Scrambled to his left and completed a 10-yard pass to James on 2nd and 10.
18. Got sacked on 1st and 10 by Kentavius Street who beat Tom Compton.
19. Completed a 20-yard pass to Sherfield running a deep out route on 2nd and 15. Another power throw with anticipation.
20. Completed a 5-yard pass to Ross Dwelley running a quick out route on 1st and 10.
21. Threw a pass that hit rookie running back Elijah Mitchell in the hands. Mitchell dropped it and tipped to Marcell Harris who made the interception.
Lance played well the first half of practice when he got to throw to Aiyuk and Samuel, then had some trouble in the second half when he didn't get to play with any starters. He also didn't get to throw any bootleg passes, and he ran just two zone reads, unlike the past few days. Seems like the 49ers want to keep him a secret for now.
I still say Lance will start Week 1. The 49ers just have to trade Garoppolo first.