No. 5: Did Jimmy Garoppolo Silence his Critics
To put it bluntly, no. However, that isn’t necessarily an indictment of Jimmy Garoppolo, as he did just enough to allow his team to come away with the Week 1 win.
What do good quarterbacks do? They play mistake-free football. And when things aren’t going their way on the field, they do everything they can to not force the issue. It would have been very easy for the 49ers signal-caller to do just that in this contest, and it most likely would have cost the team a much-needed opening day win.
Garoppolo finished this game having completed 18 of his 27 passes for 166 yards, one touchdown and a pick-six interception.
Not a great line by any means, but also not one so bad as to negate the stellar performance of the defense.
Some in the media and many fans have had some not-so-great things to say about the job Garoppolo did in this game. Regardless, there is little chance the 49ers fly to Ohio for a week in Youngstown before facing the Cincinnati Bengals at 1-0 without the play of their quarterback.
What is being lost, as people continue the discussion, is Garoppolo also had two touchdown passes called back by penalties. Those plays came on passes to tight end George Kittle, plays that would have improved Jimmy G’s stat line immensely.
He did have a major gaffe with a poor decision, staring down Tevin Coleman on a passing play. Buccaneers defensive back Vernon Hargreaves broke on a pass intended for the running back, intercepted it and was in the end zone almost immediately.
For the 49ers to make the playoffs for the first time since 2013, Garoppolo will have to improve on his play and decision making as the season progresses and the competition becomes stiffer.