49ers Jimmy Garoppolo slighted by Chris Simms QB ranking

Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Jimmy Garoppolo #10 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

Does Chris Simms hate the 49ers’ Jimmy Garoppolo or something?

NBC Sports’ Chris Simms is a documented good friend of the San Francisco 49ers head coach, Kyle Shanahan. Some even go as far as to say that they are best friends.

Well, that may be true, but it doesn’t mean Simms necessarily approves of Shanahan’s choice of signal-caller, quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.

Simms incrementally released his “Top-40 QB Rankings” over the last couple of weeks over Twitter. And while some players are perfectly placed, others are grossly miss-ranked.

The glaring error I can’t help but ignore is the placement of Jimmy G, who is slotted in at No. 20.

Now let me be clear, I am realistic when it comes to the level of talent regarding players on the team. I know Garoppolo is not a top-five quarterback in the NFL. To be honest, I don’t even think you can justifiably say he is among the top 10… yet. This is not due to his talent or lack thereof, but rather it is due to the fact he has simply not played long enough to grade him higher than the likes of the Atlanta Falcons’ Matt Ryan, the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Ben Roethlisberger or even the Detroit Lions’ Matt Stafford. Now, this is not to say Garoppolo can’t eventually reach or surpass them, but I think at the moment those players have shown what they can do for a longer period of time and deserve the respect.

Where I start to cringe is when I see quarterbacks like the Buffalo Bills’ Josh Allen, the Tennessee Titans’ Ryan Tannehill, current free-agent Cam Newton and the Indianapolis Colts’ Philip Rivers ranked above Jimmy G.

Where Chris Simms got it wrong about the 49ers’ Jimmy Garoppolo

This is not to say these players aren’t good quarterbacks, but how can you justifiably rank a player, who has barely played in two seasons and is currently without a team, 10 spots above a starting franchise quarterback who finished top five in touchdowns, completion percentage, passer rating, and yards per attempt. I am, of course, referring to Newton, who in my opinion is vastly past his prime as an NFL quarterback. The rest of the NFL must feel the same way since he is still without a roster spot for the upcoming season.

Stats aren’t everything, of course, but placing Jimmy G behind a washed-up Rivers who threw 20 picks last year, and a wildly inaccurate sophomore in Allen, who was among the worst passers in 2019, is wildly insulting to everything Garoppolo did last season. The Niners sported an elite defense, sure, but Jimmy G was also top-five in game-winning drives this season with four. Also, as stated earlier, he was among the league leaders in almost every statistical category.

Where I start to question the logic behind this list is with Tannehill’s ranking at No .11. Anything said about Jimmy G in terms of sample size and having to prove himself a little more can be doubled down for Tannehill. This is a player who has been good, not great, for his entire career. Yet, we are supposed to digest he is among some of the top signal-callers in the league based off of one season?

I don’t buy it. In fact, I believe Tannehill deserves Garoppolo’s spot at No. 20.

This is not to say I believe Jimmy G deserves to be shot up the list that much, but I think he deserves to be placed between spot Nos. 12 to 15 until he is able to show critics another year or two of similar production. There is just no way you can convince me a player (Newton), who is posting workout videos in an attempt to get signed to a team this season deserves to be placed 10 spots ahead of a franchise quarterback who just led his team to a 13-3 record and made the Super Bowl.

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Luckily, Simms is not part of the 49ers coaching staff, nor is he a member of their front office, so we don’t really need to worry much about his opinion regarding quarterback talent. Nonetheless, Garoppolo deserves the respect of at least being called an above-average starter in the NFL.