Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports



It's Tuesday and San Francisco 49ers fans are still reveling in Sunday's 15-14 road victory over the Chicago Bears, which was just the team's second of the season. Two of the 49ers' three road wins since the end of the Jim Harbaugh era have come at Soldier Field.

Despite the record, 49ers players are in good spirits and like the direction the team is headed. They were so impressed with new starting quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo's performance that they cheered as he boarded the team bus following the game. Wide receiver Marquise Goodwin even reportedly gave up his front-row seat for his quarterback.

"It was nice of him, smart," 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan jokingly said on Monday. "Receivers should do whatever they can to get quarterbacks to like them."

RELATED Recap: 49ers defeat Bears 15-14 in QB Jimmy Garoppolo's starting debut

We had an opportunity to speak with rookie defensive end Solomon Thomas on Tuesday, who is among those impressed with the 49ers' new quarterback.

"He got on the bus, and we're all just like, 'Jimmy!'" Thomas said. "Just happy for him. He's been waiting for this moment for a while. He's been working his butt off these last few years just learning and getting ready for this opportunity. He stayed ready this whole time, and that's why he was able to seize the moment and dominate it so well."

With Garoppolo at the helm, the 49ers offense converted 10 of 18 third downs (55.6 percent). The 49ers had converted just 34.1 percent of their third downs this season going into the game, according to the Press Democrat. The 10 third-down conversions were the most by the team since a 2007 matchup against the New Orleans Saints when the offense converted 10 of 19.


The 49ers offense held the ball for 38:47, which is the most since a 2014 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers (42:17), while San Francisco's final drive took 8:19 off of the clock.

The 49ers' ability to control the time of possession was a great benefit to the defense, which held the Bears to just 147 net yards and allowed only eight first downs.

"He brought a great energy to the game, and we were riding with him," Thomas said. "We loved it. He helped the defense a lot. The offense played well. The offensive line, receivers, running backs, Jimmy, they all played amazing to keep us off the field. We only had 37 snaps, which is extremely low. The offense helped us out a lot.

"Jimmy had great control of the game, great tempo, he's very poised. It was fun to watch. It was pretty amazing. We just have a good energy going on right now. We're about to hit this week really hard, just get after it and get ready for Houston."

You'll be able to hear more from our conversation with Solomon Thomas and his father, Chris, on our next "No Huddle" podcast due out this week.