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Jimmy’s G.’s injury: How should Raiders fans feel about it?

Is this is a sign to come for the new Las Vegas quarterback?

Las Vegas Raiders Introduce Jimmy Garoppolo
Jimmy Garoppolo
Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Ok, Jimmy Garoppolo is likely not going to make his practice debut with the Las Vegas Raiders until training camp, about six weeks before the regular-season opens.

That is not devastating news, but it’s not ideal, either.

In the end, all might be fine. But with Jimmy G.’s injury history, this certainly isn’t a great start, especially considering the Raiders are in on him for $45 million in guaranteed money.

On Thursday, Las Vegas coach Josh McDaniels indicated that there hasn’t been any setbacks and Garoppolo is going through a process that has been expected since the team signed him in March. Garoppolo’s 2022 season ended December 3 when he suffered a foot injury with the San Francisco 49ers. There was hope he could be available for the Super Bowl in February if the 49ers advanced.

Asked on Thursday if Garoppolo had surgery since signing with Raiders in March, McDaniels wouldn’t specifically answer it. Yet, moments later, the Athletic reported that, indeed, Garoppolo did have surgery since inking his Las Vegas deal.

Perhaps Las Vegas knew this when they signed Garoppolo and that’s why McDaniels is saying there are no surprises. Remember, Garoppolo’s signing was pushed back a day. The reported reason why was the two sides were working through contract language. This is purely speculation on my part, but perhaps the need for the surgery was discovered in his physical and that was part of the delay in making the contract official.

Otherwise, you would think Garoppolo would have had surgery between January 29 (when the 49ers’ season ended) and March 13 (when Garoppolo and the Raiders agreed to terms).

At the end of the day, if Garoppolo is healthy at the start of training camp, all should be well. But the what hovers over this late-May news is Garoppolo’s injury history.

He has played a full season just once and has missed large chunks of multiple seasons. So, while the Raiders are saying this is part of a process, it is a bit jarring for this news to break this late after he signed with the team. The team could have said in March that this was the timeline. For it to happen this relatively late in the offseason creates nervous energy about Jimmy G.’s overall health.

Still, the key is for him to be ready by Week 1 at Denver on Sept. 10 and NFL Media reported Thursday is progressing well.

Training camp will be vital for Garoppolo and he will try to make up the offseason time to get in sync with his new offensive teammates. The lost offseason time could hurt, but there still will be time for him to get ready for the season.

In the meantime, the OTA sessions and next month’s mandatory minicamp will feature veteran quarterback Brian Hoyer will run with the first-team offense and fourth-round pick Aidan O’Connell and returner Chase Garbers at quarterback in Las Vegas.

O’Connell could benefit from having one less quarterback during these sessions. it will increase his rep load and could help him push Hoyer to be Garoppolo’s backup during the season. As we were reminded Thursday, being Garoppolo‘s backup is an extremely vital role.