Are Patrick Mahomes and Jimmy Garoppolo Friends?
Patrick Mahomes and Jimmy Garoppolo are set to square off when the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers take the field in Super Bowl LIV. The last time the Chiefs and 49ers played each other was in the third week of the 2018 season in a game that ended Garoppolo’s season. While both quarterbacks will be competing hard to win a championship for their team, are Mahomes and Garoppolo friends off the field?
Patrick Mahomes opens up about going to the Super Bowl
There is no denying that Mahomes is one of the most skilled quarterbacks in the NFL. During the past two seasons, Mahomes has made some of the craziest passes in the history of the league, convincing fans that he can throw the ball in just about any situation.
Although this is only Mahomes’ second season as a starting quarterback, he understands that making it to the Super Bowl requires a team effort.
“Being in the right organization with the right coaches, the right teammates … being in this league, it’s not about one person,” Mahomes shared. “It’s not about the quarterback. It’s about your team and how you go out there and play as a team and play together.”
He added that Jimmy Garoppolo probably has the exact same opinion about his team, especially when it comes to taking advantage of rare opportunities.
Patrick Mahomes has led the Chiefs to the Super Bowl with some dynamic play at the quarterback position. The 49ers, on the other hand, have leaned on a stingy defense and have not needed Garoppolo to do any heavy lifting — at least not yet.
The Chiefs and 49ers square off
Between the explosive offense of the Chiefs and the 49ers’ elite defense, there is no telling which team will come out on top this year. Making an accurate Super Bowl prediction is even harder given how the Chiefs and 49ers haven’t played each other in a meaningful game since 2018.
When they faced each other in week 3 of the 2018 season, the Chiefs defeated the 49ers 38-27. But the biggest moment of the game came when Garoppolo tore his ACL in the fourth quarter.
Without their star quarterback for the remainder of the season, the 49ers finished with a dismal 4-12 record. But because of their poor performance, they were able to pick Nick Bosa in the draft.
Fast forward a year later and the 49ers are in a good spot to finish the year on top. While it is good to see Jimmy Garoppolo back from the injury, he shared a moment with Mahomes after the game that left a lasting impression.
Garoppolo praises Mahomes
Garoppolo was carted off the field after he tore his ACL in the game against the Chiefs. Once the game was over, Mahomes actively searched for Garoppolo and found him in the tunnels.
Although the two had never met, Garoppolo still remembers what Patrick Mahomes told him and had nothing but good things to say about the Chiefs quarterback.
“I didn’t even know Pat at the time. For him to come out of his way after the game and wish me luck and everything, just a real class act. The guy is awesome, on the field, off the field, he does it all,” he recalled.
Mahomes and Garoppolo have not had a chance to talk after that game in 2018. In a recent interview, the 49ers star admitted that he and Mahomes are not friends off the field, but he still remembers their interaction fondly.
Patrick Mahomes and Jimmy Garoppolo are linked by one trade
Another interesting aspect at work here is the unlikely trade that led to Mahomes and Garoppolo landing on their respective teams — and it all has something to do with Colin Kaepernick.
When former 49ers quarterback Alex Smith went down with a concussion in 2012, Kaepernick shined as his replacement. In light of Kaepernick’s success, the team immediately named him their starter and went all the way to the Super Bowl that year.
The 49ers eventually traded Smith to the Chiefs, though their experiment with Kaepernick fell apart by 2016. The Chiefs also got tired of Smith, who was bringing them success but could not get them to the next level.
Eager to find a more dynamic quarterback, the Chiefs drafted Patrick Mahomes in 2017. The 49ers had a chance to draft Mahomes that same year, but they traded their pick in hopes to land Kurt Cousins in free agency.
After seeing Mahomes’ potential, the Chiefs let Smith go following the 2017 season. The 49ers meanwhile, got an amazing deal when the New England Patriots offered to trade Garoppolo in exchange for a measly second-round pick.
In 2018, both Patrick Mahomes and Jimmy Garoppolo led their teams in their first year as starting quarterbacks. But it is possible that neither team would have been in that position if it hadn’t been for Kaepernick.