No. 5: Whoever Starts for the SF 49ers at Quarterback
At the time of this writing, it is unknown who the SF 49ers’ starting quarterback will be in Week 3.
So, I will make the case for why both of them will shine this week if given the start.
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First, the case of Garoppolo. Before leaving at halftime due to an ankle injury, Garoppolo was having possibly the best game of career last week against the Jets. He was 14-of16 for 131 yards, two touchdowns, and no interceptions. After a rocky start in Week 1 against the Cardinals, Garoppolo was accurate and confident in the pocket. He continued to look great after an ankle injury and consistent late hits from the Jets defense.
If Garoppolo plays, and plays the way he did against the Jets, he will dominate the Giants and shine on Sunday.
However, Garoppolo has been missing practice and is considered very unlikely to make the start. That brings us to Mullens. Mullens is one of the better backup quarterbacks in the NFL. After all, he did have one of the greatest debuts by an NFL quarterback of all time two years ago.
He was not great in relief against the Jets last week, completing eight of 11 passes for 71 yards, no touchdowns, and one interception. Of course, he did not have to be great because the Niners were already dominating the Jets. Not to mention that it was Mullens’ first in-game action since Week 8 of the 2019 season when he saw seven snaps against the Carolina Panthers.
If Mullens starts the game this week, it will be after practicing consistently with the first-team offense, and he should look far better than last week. Mullens has proven that he is a capable NFL quarterback. Additionally, the Giants defense is sub-par, and Mullens should easily be able to lead the SF 49ers offense against them.
Expect Mullens to improve upon last week’s relief performance if given the start, and shine in Week 3.
Despite last week’s devastating injury toll, San Francisco should still be able to beat New York in Week 3. They will do so on the backs of various players dominating this week, and five of those players will be McKinnon, Wilson, Hyder, Reed, and whoever the 49ers start at quarterback.
Expect these players to shine as the Niners cruise to a victory in Week 3.