Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports


For third-straight year, Jimmy Garoppolo named as 49ers player who will have biggest impact on season

Jul 23, 2020 at 11:30 AM--


San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo may have endured a lot of criticism this offseason — you know, if he listened to the outside noise. He doesn't. Garoppolo seems focused on doing what he needs to do to be ready for the 2020 season rather than dwell on February's Super Bowl collapse.

"You haven't seen any crazy media lash-outs from him, or him be down on himself, or anything like that," fullback Kyle Juszczyk said in May. "It's just Jim. He comes to work every day, works his butt off, has the same demeanor every day. The outside noise, it truly doesn't seem to affect him."

That's good because there is a lot of pressure on Garoppolo. He'll be asked to improve upon one of the best seasons by a 49ers quarterback. Garoppolo's 3,978 passing yards in 2019 ranks fourth all-time in franchise history.

For the third year in a row, David Lombardi of The Athletic named Garoppolo as the player who will have the biggest impact on the 49ers' upcoming campaign. For those who want to criticize the quarterback, Lombardi reminds readers of the effect Garoppolo has had during his time with head coach Kyle Shanahan.

Since taking over the 49ers in 2017, Shanahan is 4-20 without Garoppolo helming the offense. With him, Shanahan is 21-6. The offense averaged 16.9 yards per game with quarterbacks not named Garoppolo. With him, that average jumps to 28.9 points per game, which Lombardi points out would have been good enough to rank No. 2 in the NFL last season.

"Simply put, this is a quarterback's league, and the 49ers have a good one," writes Lombardi. "That's not to say Garoppolo is a flawless player. His struggles in the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl were a significant part of the 49ers' collapse, and he obviously still has key deficiencies to address."

An improved Garoppolo means a better chance for the 49ers to rebound from February's heartbreaking defeat and earn the franchise's sixth Vince Lombardi Trophy.

One 49ers player is eager to see Garoppolo prove his doubters wrong.

"I'm just looking forward to sharing the field with him again because I know he's definitely hungry, and he's got a lot to prove," All-Pro tight end George Kittle said in May. "I just can't wait for everyone to see how good he is."

Click here to read Lombardi's entire list of the 10 players who will have the biggest impact on the 49ers' 2020 season.





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