Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

49ers-Broncos: Kyle Shanahan takes blame for Jimmy Garoppolo’s safety

Sep 25, 2022 at 9:43 PM--

What exactly happened on the play where quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo stepped out of the end zone for a safety in the 49ers' 11-10 loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday night? The explanations following the game were somewhat vague, but one thing that was apparent was head coach Kyle Shanahan taking the blame on his shoulders for how the play unfolded.

The safety took place early in the third quarter with the 49ers holding a 7-3 lead. Garoppolo and the 49ers faced a 2nd-and-10 from the 2-yard line when Garoppolo faked a handoff then dropped back to pass, after which he was pressured and stepped out of the end zone before throwing a short pass that would have been intercepted.

When discussing the play in his postgame media session, Shanahan suggested it was his playcall that led to Garoppolo stepping out of the end zone.

"That was a tough situation I put him in -- that unblocked guy coming," Shanahan said. "I wish we would have had time for the big play and could have ditched it. But that was a tough situation I put him in."

Garoppolo's comments were similar to Shanahan's, while adding he was buying time for the play to develop before he wound up taking the safety.

"Tough situation. Just trying to buy some time for the play. Yeah, that was a tough situation," Garoppolo said, later adding, "I was just running the play, trying to buy some time for it. It was a longer developing play. Just a tough situation though, that whole thing."

The safety was one of several mistakes Garoppolo and the offense made en route to losing a game the 49ers could have won had their been a cleaner performance throughout the evening. Garoppolo finished 18-of-29 for 211 yards, one touchdown and one interception, while the offense as a whole committed three turnovers and converted just one of ten opportunities on third downs.

"Altogether it was a sloppy day," Garoppolo said. "I think we had really one clean drive, got points off of it. Other than that, the defense kept us in that game. But just overall, just a sloppy day."

Shanahan wasn't pointing the finger at Garoppolo after the game, saying instead the offense as a whole didn't get the job done when they needed to.

"I thought he played real well in the first half," Shanahan said. "I thought he made some plays, hit the ones that were there and made some that weren't there. In the second half, I don't think anyone on offense did good, including myself. We didn't really get into a rhythm the whole time. Our defense did a hell of a job keeping us in there, but we weren't able to get it going."

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