Quarterback Comparison: Jimmy Garoppolo vs. Jameis Winston
Both quarterbacks, Jimmy Garoppolo and Jameis Winston, will be under plenty of scrutiny in 2019.
Garoppolo needs to finally start living up to that five-year, $137.5 million deal, which he signed before his ACL tear. Winston, meanwhile, is playing on his fifth-year option. A good campaign this year could result in a multiyear, lucrative new deal in 2020, while any elongated struggles could end with the Buccaneers saying goodbye to Winston in the offseason and an uncertain future.
Garoppolo has never faced the Bucs before, although team splits can be something of a silly stat. The 49ers are hoping, of course, Garoppolo emulates the kind of efforts he enjoyed during those final five starts of 2017. Not necessarily the so-so efforts in the two-plus weeks to start last year.
Of course, Garoppolo’s preseason efforts draw attention. His five-interception training camp practice caught the eye of local and national media, while his on-field return against the Denver Broncos in Week 2 of the preseason wasn’t good at all, as he posted a 0.0 passer rating in the process.
Fortunately, Garoppolo answered back with a solid effort the following week against the Kansas City Chiefs, putting up a rating of 116.2.
Take away what you wish from those preseason lines. But it’s a partial indication Garoppolo shook off some of the rust from being out of action for nearly a year.
And the Bucs defense is probably more in line with that of the Chiefs, not the Broncos.
Winston, meanwhile, is 2-0 against the 49ers over his career, including Tampa Bay’s win last season.
But that doesn’t change the fact Winston had a 19-to-14 touchdown-to-interception ratio in 2018, passing for less than 3,000 yards and looking nothing like a franchise-caliber quarterback, who lost starting duties to now-Miami Dolphins QB Ryan Fitzpatrick.
Winston wasn’t good at all during the Buccaneers’ preseason tuneup against the Cleveland Browns in Week 3, completing just 47.4 percent of his passes on 26 dropbacks, taking a whopping five sacks in the process.
Being under pressure is something 49ers radio announcer Greg Papa pointed out, on Sacramento’s KHTK 1140 Thursday morning, could be the key in San Francisco pulling off the win.
Based off Winston’s preseason numbers against the Browns, it’s not hard to see why.