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49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo ready for return to New England

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Jimmy Garoppolo’s early NFL education came going up against Bill Belichick’s complicated defense each day in practice with the New England Patriots.

That work helped Garoppolo develop from a raw prospect coming out of Eastern Illinois into an accomplished quarterback in the NFL, even if it took leaving New England to do it.

Now Garoppolo gets his first chance to go up against his former coach and team since being traded away to San Francisco nearly three years ago when the 49ers visit the Patriots on Sunday.

“It set me up for everything here, made the transition a lot easier,” Garoppolo said about the work he did with the Patriots.