The San Francisco 49ers announced its list of 2019 preseason opponents on Tuesday, and there's one obvious storyline. Jimmy Garoppolo and the 49ers will visit the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 3 of the preseason, the game commonly referred to as the "dress rehearsal" for the regular season.
Garoppolo tore his ACL at Arrowhead Stadium in Week 3 last year. Garoppolo suffered the injury to his left knee after scrambling to his left during the 49ers final drive of the game. It was a non-contact injury that took place when the quarterback planted near the sideline and tried to pick up a few extra yards.
San Francisco's franchise signal-caller is currently working his way back to full strength. Garoppolo has already been working on his drop backs and has resumed throwing. Kyle Shanahan said that he expects Garoppolo to be a full participant in the offseason program outside of team drills in minicamp as a precautionary measure.
Garoppolo played the entire first half as well as the opening drive of the third quarter in the team's third preseason game last year against the Indianapolis Colts. He completed 9-of-19 passes for 135 yards. It will be curious to see how Shanahan and the 49ers approach Garoppolo's playing time in the preseason this August.
He threw for 718 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions in three games before suffering his torn ACL.
That game will also have meaning for Dee Ford, who will return to Kansas City after spending his first five seasons with the Chiefs. The 49ers acquired Ford this offseason in exchange for a 2020 second-round pick and subsequently signed the pass rusher to a five-year contract.
San Francisco will open the preseason at home against the Dallas Cowboys, visit the Denver Broncos in Week 2 and finish up the exhibition slate by hosting the Los Angeles Chargers. The 49ers are expected to spend a full week in Denver for joint practices against the Broncos, something the team did in 2015 and 2016.