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49ers coach Kyle Shanahan won’t make promises with Jimmy Garoppolo

The general presumption among football observers and fans after the San Francisco 49ers traded for Jimmy Garoppolo was that the quarterback would immediately take over the reins under center for head coach Kyle Shanahan. It turns out, that’s that is not what’s going to happen.

During a press conference on Wednesday, Kyle Shanahan revealed that the 49ers don’t have a concrete idea yet of when they’ll start Garoppolo and went as a far as to suggest that the quarterback might not start at all this season, per Josh Alper of Pro Football Talk.

Shanahan said he “can’t promise” that Garoppolo will play before the 2017 season is over, which may seem a bit alarming since the team traded a second-round pick for him and need to make a plan for how to handle his impending free agency.

Alper has a point.

Garoppolo’s current contract is set to expire at the end of the season, and regardless of how big San Francisco’s financial muscle is in the offseason, that won’t diminish the fact that Garoppolo could leave them via free agency. In other words, by opting not to play Garoppolo this season, the second-round pick San Francisco gave to the New England Patriots in the trade could be a big waste of asset in the end.

Of course, that’s if Garoppolo ditched the Niners in free agency.

For the meantime, it’s presumed that the 49ers will go with rookie C.J. Beathard to call the plays under center, while Garoppolo acclimates to his new environment and gets familiar with a new set of plays.

The 0-8 49ers have the Arizona Cardinals at home this Sunday.