Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Wife of 49ers punter Mitch Wishnowsky gets game ball after giving birth

Oct 31, 2021 at 4:19 PM--

It's not a surprise that 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan handed out one of two game balls from his team's 33-22 win over the Chicago Bears on Sunday to quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo after he threw for 322 yards while running for two touchdowns one week after a rough performance in a 30-18 loss to the Indianapolis Colts. But no one outside of the 49ers locker room would have been able to guess that Shanahan's second choice for a game ball was the wife of punter Mitch Wishnowsky, who gave birth on Saturday night.

Wishnowsky's wife Maddie gave birth to a girl just hours before the win over the Bears while Mitch was by her side. Shanahan was impressed enough by what he heard about Maddie to give her special recognition after the game.

"I heard she was very tough," Shanahan said. "Checking in on them, he said he couldn't eat. He was throwing up, he was so nervous. So he didn't get one, she got one."

Wishnowsky flew to Chicago to play in Sunday's game, but as fate would have it, the 49ers wound up only needing him as a holder on field goals. The offense put up 467 yards in the win and didn't need Wishnowsky to punt at all.

"We were just messing with Mitch because he had a baby yesterday and we flew him out here to punt," Shanahan joked. "At least he held though."

Wishnowsky was averaging just under four punts a game coming into the win over the Bears, which was his first game this season without a punt. Chances are he didn't mind too much given the fact he followed up becoming a father with a win that snapped a four-game losing streak. The offense certainly didn't mind either, considering that not needing to punt was a sign of one of their most successful outings of the season.

"Pretty cool," center Alex Mack said. "You definitely want to have long drives, extend them, get points, move down the field, so that was definitely good. Poor Mitch to fly all the way out here and just hold balls. Hold field goals -- that sounds a little better."

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