No. 5: Jimmy Garoppolo is more than a game manager when called upon
Let’s be clear: Jimmy Garoppolo struggled last week against the Seattle Seahawks, and while it wasn’t all on the shoulders of the Niners quarterback — elements like George Kittle not playing, wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders going out with injury, and the offensive line struggling didn’t help — Garoppolo needed to be better.
But as much as Garoppolo looked shaky at times against Seattle, he has not often appeared as such in games against Arizona in 2019.
In two games against the Cardinals, the 49ers defense has played less like itself than in other weeks and the running game failed to get going, leaving the game squarely on the shoulders of Garoppolo. The quarterback responded by finishing a combined 62-of-82 (76 percent) for 741 yards, eight touchdowns and two interceptions, with quarterback ratings of 136.9 and 115.4, respectively.
Just in case you aren’t sure, those are pretty good numbers. And it’s safe to say the 49ers would have lost both games without Garoppolo under center.
There are still times where Garoppolo makes head-scratching or completely ridiculous decisions, as evidenced by his first (and possibly his second) interception, where the quarterback seemingly didn’t see the Cardinals defender basically waiting for Garoppolo to throw to where the defender was standing.
But those who say Garoppolo is unable to take the team on his shoulders and win a game for them, or that he can’t make big time throws when it matters the most, should watch the last few drives of this game.
He isn’t perfect, but Garoppolo is fully capable of taking over when the 49ers need him to.