Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Golden Nugget Award: A surprising recipient from the 49ers’ loss to the Packers

Sep 27, 2021 at 9:33 PM--

Despite the loss, the San Francisco 49ers starting quarterback wins an award. The Week Three "Golden Nugget Award" goes to Jimmy Garoppolo. Each week, I'll present this award to a player who had an outstanding game or a player who manages to defy the odds.

The other candidates for this weekly award were fullback Kyle Juszczky for his versatility in the passing and running games, defensive end Nick Bosa for being disruptive on the line, and Azeez Al-Shaair, who did an excellent job at the linebacker position.

At the beginning of the Sunday Night Football telecast, Cris Collinsworth asked, if the game was going to get into a shootout, can Garoppolo go toe to toe with Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers?

Garoppolo started slow but finished the game with 257 passing yards and two touchdowns but threw an interception when he attempted to hit tight end George Kittle deep in the second quarter. Packers cornerback Jaire Alexander came from the other side of the field and snatched the ball from his hands.

"It looked like, from the replay, he made a hell of a play," Garoppolo said after the game. "He was the backside corner on that. It's not his responsibility at all. The ball felt good coming off my hand. I didn't really get to see it. I got hit, but you know it was a nice play by that guy".

With the 49ers down 17-0, a Trenton Cannon 60-yard kickoff return put the offense at the Packers' 32-yard line where Garoppolo would begin engineering a drive that wound up at the Packers' one-yard line.

On fourth and goal with two seconds left, rookie quarterback Trey Lance would run in for the 49ers' first score of the game but they were still be down 17-7 going into halftime.

After the former North Dakota St. Bison scored, many fans on social media and broadcasters on the NBC telecast, such as Tony Dungy, were lobbying for San Francisco to let the rookie play.

Coming out of halftime, Garoppolo led the 49ers on a 13-play, 83-yard drive that ended with an eight-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Aiyuk.

Later, a Trey Sermon one-yard touchdown run cut the Packer lead to 21-24, but Garoppolo fumbled the ball, which Green Bay used to add to its lead (27-21) with 5:08 left in the fourth quarter.

"I was trying to throw it away as the guy [Kenny Clark] hit my arm, and you know, unfortunate call by the refs there for a fumble," Garoppolo said.

49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan believed the defender got through way too early.

"It was a play-action screen," Shanahan said. "Right when he turned around, it looked like 97 [Kenny Clark], and he tried to get rid of it and threw it backwards.

With 2:39 left in the game, the 49ers marched 75 yards in eight plays to take a 28-27 lead when Garoppolo hit Juszczyk for a 12-yard touchdown pass.

Though the Packers were able to win with a game-winning 51-yard field goal by Mason Crosby as time expired, the 49ers quarterback was seconds away from going from heel to hero of the game.

The 49ers' next game will be on October 3, as they host the Seattle Seahawks (1-2), a team coming off a loss to the Minnesota Vikings.
  • Written by:
    Sports has been my first love since I was 12 years old. At one point I wanted to play football professionally. I started to take photography as a hobby in my teenage years but this was when I followed sports. I started to listen to sports radio, I found my true calling and it was to be a sports talk show host. Though I follow football and basketball, I started to have a new love of cultures around the world. After graduating from San Antonio College in 2018, I worked for the Castroville News Bulletin before going to A&M San Antonio to get my communications degree. Since I have written for the Ranger of San Antonio College, the News Bulletin and the Mesquite of Texas A&M San Antonio, I met many people and went to a lot of events. My major milestone was being in the press box of the San Antonio Commanders game for the Mesquite and being apart of a press conference with the Medina County Sheriff and other local news outlets. When I am not doing anything, I like to watch old cartoons on the DC Universe, play video games such as Mega Man and the Mass Effect series. I have also created Youtube channel called "Anger Management" with my friend Aaron Donnell.
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