The 49ers’ fears have been confirmed.
An MRI on Monday revealed quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo sustained a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs, the team announced, ending his 2018 campaign after just three weeks.
Garoppolo left Sunday’s loss in Kansas City in the fourth quarter after his left knee buckled during a scramble before colliding with defensive back Steven Nelson.
Garoppolo tried to extend the play and get more yardage on a long third-and-goal by initiating contact with Nelson rather than going out of bounds. It appeared the injury happened as Garoppolo planted his left leg and tried to push up field along the sideline.
The 49ers in February agreed to make Garoppolo their franchise quarterback with a five-year, $137.5 million contact, which was the most in league history when signed. It was later surpassed by contracts for Kirk Cousins (Minnesota Vikings) and extensions for Matt Ryan (Atlanta Falcons) and Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay Packers).
San Francisco entered 2018 with renewed confidence with Garoppolo under center after he led the team to a 5-0 record during his starts to end last season after being acquired in a trade from the New England Patriots.
Garoppolo, 26, joins a long list of quarterbacks to suffer the injury, including his former mentor in New England, Tom Brady, as well as Donovan McNabb, Carson Wentz and Carson Palmer.
In his five-year career, Garoppolo has made 10 starts. He left two during the game due to injury, including Week 2 in 2016 while filling in for Brady in a victory over the Miami Dolphins.