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Jeff Garcia praises Brock Purdy, discusses 49ers QB’s growth potential

Apr 11, 2024 at 12:46 PM

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Jeff Garcia has been impressed by San Francisco 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy in his two seasons with the team. As the last overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, Purdy was thrust into the spotlight after the 49ers faced quarterback injuries and proved his NFL mettle.

While some doubts lingered after his rookie season, Purdy's resilience shone through. Despite starting only five regular-season games, he guided the 49ers to the NFC Championship Game, where, unfortunately, he suffered a torn ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) in his throwing arm. Garcia was among those who wondered whether Purdy could maintain his success into his second season.

Last year, coming off surgery, Purdy set a single-season franchise record with 4,280 passing yards. His impressive performance earned him a Pro Bowl selection and positioned him as a finalist for the coveted MVP award, culminating in leading the 49ers to a Super Bowl appearance.

"He went through a little streak last season where there were a couple of struggles, but he snapped out of it," Garcia said Thursday on Bay Area radio station KNBR's "Murph and Markus" show. "Got back to doing what he does best and making plays, making smart decisions, giving his weapons an opportunity to make plays, to catch the ball, to run with the ball, escaping the pocket, lengthening the play when needed, and making some unbelievable plays. I mean, enough big-time plays to help lead that team to the Super Bowl and damn near win it."

This year marks a significant opportunity for Purdy to refine his skills, as he will receive most of the offseason practice reps for the first time in his career. He was buried on the depth chart as a rookie. Last offseason, he was recovering from surgery and didn't throw to his teammates until training camp.

Garcia believes Purdy can leverage this offseason to enhance his arm strength, speed, and durability while scrutinizing his on-field play to identify areas for improvement.

"Maybe there were certain breakdowns in decision-making, certain decisions based on pre-snap and post-snap, how he's seeing the coverage, how he's seeing the coverage rotate after the snap, where he's going with the football," Garcia stated. "I mean, how can you knock a young man that did everything that he did in just his first full-time season as a starting quarterback and lead the team to the Super Bowl? I mean, how do you change that?

"You just continue to grow upon that, and I'm sure he's going to be very critical of the things that he did last year, how he can improve himself, how he can go in as a greater leader, more confident in the system. How do you continue to expand the system with him now as your stable quarterback is coming back for his third season with the team? And I'm sure [head coach] Kyle [Shanahan] has a lot of things that he would like to continue to add into the system and grow with Brock as his quarterback."

Despite being just 24 years old, Purdy has exhibited a maturity beyond his years, earning praise from Garcia for his veteran-like demeanor and leadership qualities.

"He's very mature for his age, and you love to see that among these young guys, especially a young guy that's leading our team in the Bay Area," Garcia remarked.

You can listen to the entire conversation with Garcia below.


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