No. 2: Getting Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo Back on Track
No, Week 1 was not Jimmy Garoppolo’s best game. Not at all.
While San Francisco’s franchise signal-caller managed to toss for over 260 yards and a nifty touchdown to rookie wide receiver Dante Pettis, those three interceptions and net passer rating of 45.1 from the contest sure don’t look good in what turned out to be Jimmy G’s first loss of his NFL career.
49ers Webzone’s Rich Madrid broke down some of the film behind Garoppolo’s outing, which has to be taken in the context of going up against one of the league’s best defenses and secondaries. Madrid summed up Garoppolo’s efforts by writing:
"Given how easily Shanahan picked apart the best elements of the Vikings defense and schemed guys wide open, there is no reason to panic over the Week 1 performance of Jimmy Garoppolo. The not so good news is that Garoppolo must clean up his process in the pocket and cut down on the amount of reckless passes he throws. He got away with it last year. Last Sunday, he didn’t."
In comparison to, let’s say, former 49ers and now-Washington Redskins quarterback Alex Smith, Garoppolo isn’t afraid to take chances and to fit passes in tight windows. Smith plays the safe game, which is why his turnover numbers have historically been low on a year-to-year basis.
The Lions picked off Jets rookie quarterback Sam Darnold on the first play from scrimmage Monday. After that, there were zero passes the Lions were able to break up.
Garoppolo could benefit by toning down the aggression and taking the safer option at times. Against a weaker Detroit defense, however, he’ll still be able to take his chances.
Just be smart about them, Jimmy.