San Francisco 49ers’ quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is a polarizing figure around the NFL. Despite being 21-5 as a starter, some still question is Garoppolo has the tools to lead the Niners to a Super Bowl title.
Other than tight end George Kittle, the 49ers don’t have a perennial All-Pro at their skill positions, even then San Francisco was eight minutes away from winning its sixth Super Bowl title last season.
The team lost receiver Emmanuel Sanders in free agency, but added Arizona State speedster Brandon Aiyuk as his replacement at the NFL Draft.
Bleacher Report’s Kristopher Knox ranked each NFL QB’s supporting cast heading into the 2020 season, and placed the Niners’ skill-position group No. 11.
“San Francisco has an elite tight end in George Kittle and a budding star in wideout Deebo Samuel. However, the depth behind Samuel is questionable, as rookie first-rounder Brandon Aiyuk is an unproven talent. That alone keeps Garoppolo’s supporting cast out of the top 10.”
Knox dropped the 49ers from No. 7 last year, despite the fact that Samuel was an unknown rookie at the time, and San Francisco hadn’t yet traded for Sanders. Running back Raheem Mostert made a name for himself in head coach Kyle Shanahan’s run-heavy scheme in 2019, something no one could foresee going into the season.
Another reason why I think Knox has the Niners too low is the return of a trio of players: receivers Jalen Hurd, and Trent Taylor, as well as running back Jerick Mckinnon. While none of them might be household names, they will give Shanahan more options to use his offensive genius powers.
Here is how Knox’s top-10 QB supporting casts looks:
3) Drew Brees - New Orleans Saints
4) Tom Brady - Tampa Bay Buccaneers
5) Dak Prescott - Dallas Cowboys
6) Tyrod Taylor - Los Angeles Chargers
7) Kyler Murray - Arizona Cardinals
8) Josh Allen - Buffalo Bills
9) Matt Ryan - Atlanta Falcons
10) Drew Lock - Denver Broncos
Do you think Knox has the 49ers’ supporting cast too high or too low?
On to some more links:
Pass rusher Dee Ford has been a part of crushing losses to end his last two seasons. NBC Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco says Ford will use them as fuel going into the 2020 season.
Which receivers will make the Niners’ final roster? 49ers Web Zone’s Brian Renick gives his thoughts on which seven receivers will make the team in 2020.
San Francisco is one of the Super Bowl favorites going into next year. Nick Di Marco of Fansided gives three reasons why the Niners might implode and miss the playoffs in 2020.
49ers’ defensive coordinator Robert Saleh is known for his unwavering energy on the sidelines. Saleh put on his offensive cap, and teamed up with the NFL Black and College Football Hall of Fame to host a quarterback coaching summit. (49ers.com)
San Francisco has one of the deepest rosters in the league, but there isn’t enough room for everyone to get meaningful snaps. Fansided’s Peter Panacy gives his list of three potential Niners who could be traded before Week 1.
From around the NFL:
There is a lot of hype around Brady and the Buccaneers. The Athletic’s Michael Lombardi does a deep dive on how the legendary QB will fit new head coach Bruce Arians.
The 49ers lost a tough game in Baltimore last season. The Ravens 2019 campaign came to crashing end, but The Ringer’s Robert Mays says Baltimore put itself over the top with its offseason moves going into 2020.