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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Steve Spagnuolo: Brock Purdy is ‘really good’; 49ers QB ‘found seams’ in Chiefs defense

Feb 12, 2024 at 5:08 PM--

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Kansas City Chiefs defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo hadn't extensively scouted quarterback Brock Purdy before Sunday's Super Bowl matchup against the San Francisco 49ers. He didn't need to because the Chiefs had not yet faced the 24-year-old player.

However, Spagnuolo's reaction to the second-year quarterback's performance bordered on astonishment. Purdy's play surprised the defensive coordinator, forcing him to swiftly adjust the Chiefs' defensive strategy to counteract the unexpected challenges posed by the young quarterback.

"The zones, I just think their wideouts and quarterback are so good at their timing routes, and Brock Purdy is really good," Spagnuolo told Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated. "He knew when we were in certain things, and he found seams."

Such high praise from a seasoned defensive coordinator highlights Purdy's impact on the game. Purdy finished Super Bowl 58 having completed 23 of his 38 pass attempts for 255 yards and a touchdown. The 49ers had an opportunity to emerge as champions but could not stop Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs offense in overtime.

While Purdy was critical of his performance on Sunday, his head coach, Kyle Shanahan, had nothing but praise for the quarterback.

"I'm so proud of Brock, how he shows up every week, how he plays," Shanahan said. "He had an unbelievable year, and he did a hell of a job today."

Tight end George Kittle echoed Shanahan's sentiments, saying, "I thought he did a great job. Just throughout the game, I haven't watched the tape or anything like that, but Brock seemed like his normal self. You know, delivering the ball when he needed to, put it in tight coverages. I think Brock played a hell of a game."

Breer also shared on social media that one of the Chiefs' defensive coaches likened Purdy to the quarterback's childhood idol—Drew Brees.

"One of the coaches told me he sees Drew Brees qualities in Purdy," wrote Breer.

Purdy wears No. 13 to honor his father's favorite quarterback, Dan Marino. However, it was Brees whom he idolized in his youth. The former New Orleans Saints quarterback recently joined "The Jim Rome Show" and argued against the "game manager" label often placed on Purdy.

"A lot of people talk about, 'Is Purdy a system quarterback?'" Brees said. "Well, guess what, he went outside of the system (in the NFC Championship Game against the Lions), he did what nobody thought he would do in those moments, and with his legs, he was able to basically win that game for them. I think he's a guy who plays with poise, maturity, and knowledge beyond his years."

H/t to Kyle Madson of Niners Wire for the find.

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