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Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

49ers teammates react to Brock Purdy’s “one of a kind” performance

Rohan Chakravarthi
Oct 1, 2023 at 8:44 PM--

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The San Francisco 49ers cruised to a 35-16 victory over the Arizona Cardinals, improving to 4-0 on the season thanks to stellar performances from running back Christian McCaffrey, who scored a career-high four touchdowns, and quarterback Brock Purdy, who broke the 49ers' single-game completion rate record with a 20/21, 283-yard passing performance, bypassing legend Steve Young's record 90% rate.

As a result, the 49ers scored five touchdowns on six offensive drives in Purdy's best game of his career, and the quarterback's teammates were nothing but complimentary following the impressive performance.

Defensive tackle Javon Hargrave beamed about his young quarterback, calling Purdy's performance a one-of-a-kind game.

"I think it's really unseen for someone to go 20 for 21," Hargrave said. "That's just a one-of-a-kind game. We did a great job today on offense."

McCaffrey, who earned significant praise of his own for a monster performance, praised Purdy, pointing out his skillset, as well as his intangibles, as why he's a complete quarterback.

"I think you can go down the list of what makes a quarterback good and he checks every box," McCaffrey said. "Then he has all the intangibles that would be phenomenal. He brings a kind of swagger and energy every day that is fun to be around. He's quiet but very confident and he expresses that in the way he plays. It's just awesome to have him in the huddle."

Wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk has been the main beneficiary of Purdy's strong start, catching 17 passes for 320 yards through three games, including a career-high 148 yards on Sunday against the Cardinals.

The wideout commended Purdy's ability to be efficient in the impressive outing, which has helped the 49ers consistently score 30 points this season.

"Yeah, we didn't know until just right now when [head coach] Kyle [Shanahan] was breaking down the team, he told us that he was 20 of 21," Aiyuk said. "We didn't even know what the one incompletion was. He told us that it was just a throw-away on third down. So that's crazy. It just tells you the type of quarterback that he is and how efficient he is knowing where to go with the football."

Center Jake Brendel attributed Purdy's ascendance to the work he did in the offseason to become even more comfortable in the offseason, which is why expectations for the second-year quarterback have increased.

"I think he's been studying his butt off in the off-season," Brendel said about his quarterback. "He really knows the offense even more than he did last season. His audibles, his checks and the efficiency he has on the line of scrimmage and in the huddle has greatly improved. He's just been getting better every single week. So really, I expect good things from him."

Of course, head coach Kyle Shanahan chimed in on his quarterback's performance, pointing out Purdy's ability to make big throws, but also find different ways to pick apart the Cardinals defense in the efficient outing.

"He was great. He was almost perfect. But that was a third-and-20 something anyways, but he was great. Hung in there, made some big throws," Shanahan said. "A lot of times that defense is real, they don't give you the big throws so you kind of got to pick them apart and he was very efficient at doing that. When he had his opportunities for the big ones, he saw it right and made the right throws and our guys came down with it."

Through four games, Purdy has completed 72.3% of his passes, throwing for 1,019 yards, five touchdowns, and zero interceptions.

He'll look to build off a career performance against a tough Dallas Cowboys defense in Week 5, where the 49ers will look to remain undefeated in a Sunday Night game at Levi's Stadium.

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