Julian Edelman and Martellus Bennett have fired shots at Jimmy Garoppolo for not playing through an injury early in 2016 with the New England Patriots.
Jimmy Garoppolo cannot catch a break recently. Despite leading the San Francisco 49ers to two of the last three NFC Championship Games, he’s expected to be replaced under center by the No. 3 overall pick of the 2021 NFL Draft, Trey Lance.
Garoppolo has certainly had a rough go of it with the 49ers as of late, and now his former teammates on the New England Patriots are taking turns firing shots at Garoppolo. Martellus Bennett went on an impassioned tirade about Garoppolo choosing to sit out a game because of an injury, and when the subject was broached with Julian Edelman on the “I Am Athlete” podcast, he seemed to agree with Bennett’s line of thought on the matter.
Julian Edelman said he was upset when Jimmy Garoppolo sat out Week 4 of the 2016 season
To understand the full story, it’s important to know what Bennett said about Garoppolo in the first place. Back in October, Bennett joined Devin and Jason McCourty‘s podcast “Double Coverage” to discuss New England’s 2016 Super Bowl season. But Bennett quickly got sidetracked by the topic of Garoppolo:
"“Bro, we lost two games. One of them was because Jimmy Garoppolo was being a b—-. He decided not to play right before the game. Jacoby (Brissett) came out and played with a f—ed up thumb and played his heart out, but Jimmy was just being a b—- about it all. That’s why he… you can’t win with a b—- for a quarterback, first of all. That was the whole thing with him: He didn’t want to come out and do anything because his agent was trying to protect his body or some s— like that. Which, I can’t fault him for that. But like, you should have made that decision on Thursday. Now it’s Sunday. So anyways, he’s not going out there, so now Jacoby straps up and we lost to the Buffalo Bills. We shouldn’t have lost. It was just last-minute, trying to make adjustments for what Jacoby could do.” – Martellus Bennett, Double Coverage"
The game Bennett is referencing here was the Patriots 16-0 loss to the Buffalo Bills in Week 4 of the 2016 season. Garoppolo suffered an injury to his non-throwing shoulder in Week 3, and Bennett claims that on the day of the game against Buffalo, he decided that he wasn’t going to suit up. That forced third-stringer Jacoby Brissett, who had suffered a thumb injury filling in for Garoppolo the week before, to play through the injury. Unsurprisingly, New England lost.
Brissett still managed to throw for 205 yards, 109 of which went to Bennett, but things didn’t go as well for Edelman, who had just one catch for 16 yards. Edelman was presented Bennett’s quote on “I Am Athlete”, and he provided his own insights on the Garoppolo issue, which sound a bit similar to Bennett’s thoughts:
"“A lot of guys got mad about it. I’m not gonna lie, I got mad about it. I sacrifice my body all day long. I was taking shots for this, numbing up that, broken ribs, shoulders, you know, things hanging on by limbs just to play. And I can understand why Marty thinks like that.” – Julian Edelman, I Am Athlete"
While Edelman certainly wasn’t as straightforward with the topic as Bennett was, you get the sense that he wasn’t too happy about the issue either. The Patriots only lost two games during the 2016 season, and the players seem to feel they lost their Week 4 contest because Garoppolo didn’t want to play.
Toughness can be a defining trait in the NFL, and Julian Edelman can certainly prove that. Garoppolo hasn’t been able to stay on the field for much of his career, and his lack of durability has hurt not only his career, but the teams he has played for, too. Heck, Garoppolo’s lack of toughness is probably a reason he is going to lose his starting job out in San Fran.
Garoppolo hasn’t had it easy for much of his career, and Edelman’s shots at him are only adding to the woes. Things won’t get much better as Garoppolo continues to hand around in San Francisco, and he’s running out of time to prove that he isn’t as soft as everyone thinks he is.