Jimmy Garoppolo not the only Super Bowl LIV participant with New England ties

Andy Hart
January 24, 2020 - 6:47 am
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San Francisco quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and his ties to New England will be a major storyline in the next week-plus of buildup to Super Bowl LIV in Miami.

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You may have heard that Garoppolo was a former second-round pick of the Patriots. Spent three-plus years in New England as Tom Brady’s backup. May have even been Bill Belichick’s preferred choice to replace TB12 in the Foxborough dynasty.

Alas, that never happened and now Garoppolo has guided the 49ers to the cusp of another Lombardi for their own well-stocked trophy case.

But Jimmy G. is far from the only guy taking part in Super Bowl LIV with ties to the Patriots and New England. There is a pretty decent list of players, coaches and executives from the 49ers and Chiefs with a connection to New England.

49ers

Robbie Gould – The 49ers kicker and former All-Pro is in his 15th NFL season after entering the league as an undrafted rookie with the Patriots in 2005 out of Penn State. Gould was cut after competing with Adam Vinatieri that summer and Bill Belichick later called letting the young kicker go one of his most regrettable personnel decisions.

Wes Welker – A star slot receiver who redefined the role in his six seasons in New England from 2007-12, Welker is in his first year as San Francisco’s wide receivers coach. Welker was a five-time Pro Bowl selection and two-time All-Pro in his time working with his buddy Brady, catching 672 passes for 7,459 yards with 37 touchdowns in his Patriots career.

Kyle Juszczyk – Now in his third season as a Pro Bowl fullback for San Francisco, Juszczyk was a versatile star tight end in college at Harvard. He left the school as the all-time leader in receptions, receiving yards and touchdowns.

Jordan Matthews – The journeyman veteran San Francisco backup receiver spent time with the Patriots during the summer of 2018. He’s been with both the Eagles and 49ers this season.

Andrew Lauderdale – Is a first-year offensive lineman on injured reserve who is from New Hampshire and played his college football at UNH. He originally entered the NFL as an undrafted rookie with the Saints in 2017 and has bounced around to a number of teams the last three seasons, having never played in an NFL game.

Rey Smith – Is a rookie defensive tackle on the 49ers practice squad who played collegiately at Boston College. Smith started his career as an undrafted player this summer with the Lions.

Chiefs

Brendan Daly – The Kansas City defensive line coach and run game coordinator is on a pretty nice streak as he prepares for his fourth straight Super Bowl. Daly jumped ship from the Patriots this offseason after five seasons as an assistant on Belichick’s staff, the final four as defensive line coach.

Mike Pennel – The veteran defensive lineman joined the Patriots as a free agent last spring and spent the summer with New England before being cut on Aug. 26. Pennel signed with Kansas City on Oct. 19 and played in eight regular season games along the Chiefs defensive line as a reserve before starting each of the team’s two postseason wins.

Anthony Sherman – The Chiefs Pro Bowl fullback is a native of North Attleborough, Mass., who played his college football at UConn. A fifth-round pick by the Cardinals in 2011, Sherman is now in his seventh season as a core special teamer and occasional offensive option in Kansas City.

Mike Borgonzi – Borgonzi grew up in Everett, Mass., and went on to star as a three-time All-Ivy League fullback at Brown University. He’s now the Chiefs director of football operations. His brother, Dave, is a former assistant coach at Harvard who is now the Colts inside linebackers coach after spending time early in his career working in the Patriots media relations department.

Related: Adam Schefter: Patriots will want answer from Tom Brady early, learning lesson from Rob Gronkowski