Sunday's San Francisco 49ers victory over the Chicago Bears was an impressive start to the Jimmy Garoppolo era despite the quarterback's passes being kept out of the end zone. Garoppolo was poised, made solid decisions, and showed off his quick release. He was everything 49ers fans were hoping he would be.

Garoppolo, who was traded from the New England Patriots to the 49ers on October 30, finished his first team start 26-of-37 for 293 yards and an interception. Even the interception was a beauty of a pass to wide receiver Louis Murphy, which was taken out of his arms by Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller.

Garoppolo's 293 yards passing were a career-high. Although, Sunday was just his third career NFL start. Pro Football Focus listed Garoppolo as the third-highest graded player in the game (C Daniel Kilgore, WR Trent Taylor).

Trailing 12-14 with 5:27 left to play in the game, Garoppolo led a 14-play, 86-yard drive to set up the game-winning field goal by kicker Robbie Gould with four seconds left on the clock. On the drive, Garoppolo completed five of his six attempts for 54 yards and converted on three third-down plays. The drive was Brady-esque when 49ers fans have become accustomed to letdowns.

A big part of Garoppolo's success was his protection. He was under pressure on just nine of his 40 dropbacks. Garoppolo was 10-of-14 for 109 yards on third downs, with seven conversions. The 49ers converted 4-of-7 on third-and-long.

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"Great protection upfront," Gaoppolo said after the win. "I thought all day, those guys gave me a lot of time. It was a good pass rush they went against in some of those guys, but I was clean for the most part today. That plays a huge part in all third downs and big plays like that."

Garoppolo's teammates rallied around him, and after the game, they showed him how impressed they were with the performance. According to ESPN's Jim Trotter, players cheered for Garoppolo as he boarded the team bus and receiver Marquise Goodwin gave up his front-row seat for the quarterback.


"I thought it was a real good first start," head coach Kyle Shanahan said. "(He) handled the offense well. Definitely moved the chains and moved the ball well for us. It will be fun to get back (to Santa Clara) and watch the tape. When you go through this stuff, now it's nice to be able to coach off of this stuff. It will give him a chance to get much better. Went through the whole process through the week and just what it's like being in our scheme and the starting quarterback.

"And now he has a game to really learn from. What was good? What was bad? It makes it more fun going into next week with him."

Garoppolo's play should continue to improve as he becomes more comfortable in the 49ers offense. The team's next opponent will be the Houston Texans on December 10 at NRG Stadium.

h/t to Patrick Tulini for the find.