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Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

49ers: Jerry Rice, Ian Rapoport on whether or not Jimmy Garoppolo should look over his shoulder

Sep 4, 2019 at 11:31 AM--

Michael Silver started some discussion on Tuesday when he went on 95.7 The Game and said San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is under a lot of pressure this season and needs a fast start.

"I think Jimmy Garoppolo is under a lot of pressure to be productive and victorious early because [the 49ers] do like Nick Mullens," Silver said. "If you look at the type of quarterback that Kyle Shanahan's system demands, and who fits that, Nick Mullens checks just about every box."

Added Silver, "I think Jimmy G has more pressure over the next few months because Nick Mullens is sitting there, and I believe that is a very, very viable alternative. They won't say that publicly, but that's what I believe."

Garoppolo is set to earn nearly $18 million from the 49ers this year after taking home almost $42 million in 2018. If things don't pan out with Garoppolo, San Francisco has an out on his contract after this season. I'm not saying that might happen. I'm just saying the option is there.

Meanwhile, Mullens, who was named the No. 2 quarterback on Monday, is set to earn $570,000 this year.

Silver obviously believes the 49ers have a lot of faith in the backup quarterback. It sounds like a Hall of Fame wide receiver and 49ers legend believes that, too. Jerry Rice thinks Garoppolo will show some rust early on but can be the quarterback the 49ers envisioned him to be when they signed him to a five-year mega-deal last year.

"There is some pressure on Jimmy, also, because you've got Nick Mullens right behind him," Rice said Wednesday morning on 95.7 The Game during the "Joe, Lo and Dibs" show. "Jimmy knows that he has to go out, he has to play well, so you might see a little bit (of rust), but I'm expecting this guy to come out and play exceptional football."

Ian Rapoport of NFL Network also weighed in on the conversation during a KNBR interview on Wednesday morning.

"It would be nice if he started fast," Rapoport said on the "Murph and Mac" show. "It would be nice if they won a little bit. If something happens where they start 1-4, he's really struggling, I can say whatever I want, but the crowd is going to speak. You guys are going to speak. The coaches, Kyle Shanahan, is going to get the question. It's going to be a thing. Deserved or not, it's going to be a thing.

"The fact that he's been injured, the fact that he's been up and down, the fact is preseason wasn't great, it's all going to culminate in a frustrating news cycle unless he starts off really good."

Basically, start off hot and all of the uncertainty surrounding Garoppolo magically vanishes.

You can listen to the entire conversation with Rice below.

You can listen to the entire conversation with Rapoport below.

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