The San Francisco 49ers have had a rough season when it comes to injuries at the quarterback position, with a promising season seemingly derailed due to injuries to season-opening starter Trey Lance, and then backup Jimmy Garoppolo, but rookie Brock Purdy has stepped up and continued the Niners’ winning ways.
Purdy fueled the 49ers to a wild 37-34 victory over the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday, and in doing so Purdy became the first rookie quarterback to win four straight starts since Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger went 13-0 back in 2004.
Purdy finished 22-of-35 passing for 284 yards with two touchdowns and an interception, his fifth straight game with multiple touchdown passes, tied for the second-longest streak by a rookie since the 1970 merger. Purdy also tied Dak Prescott as the only rookies to do that and win all five of those games in NFL history.
“I don’t have to go in feeling like the weight of the world is on my shoulders and I have to perform or else,” Purdy said, according to ESPN’s Nick Wagoner. “I’ve just got to go do my job. So, to have that kind of game, it was great to feel like that in the fourth quarter, the game is on the line and now we’ve got to go and put up points. It was great for me to go through that and feel it again.”
“I think just the type of player he is, the type of dude he is, how good he really, actually is and how calm he is and plays this game at the quarterback position, I feel like he’s even kind of sped me up a little bit,” 49ers receiver Brandon Aiyuk said. “Today just really showed us that I think this dude is on a different level and he can play for sure.”
“What Brock’s doing is real,” 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said. “He’s a talented guy who is very tough, and when he does make mistakes he understands why and then he tries to learn from them. He doesn’t have a ton of experience in this league. So, every time he goes out there, whether it is good or bad, I feel like when you’ve got the skill set and play the game the right way, he’s only going to get better from it. So, there was a number of situations that happened today that he didn’t get in his other four games, and yes, I do think that helps.”
“I think it’s real important,” Shanahan said. “Our first goal is to get into the playoffs. I call it the tournament, and once you get there, you always have a chance for the ultimate goal. And everything about once you do get there is to position yourself the best way you can, and we don’t know until we come in, but them just telling us and being able to tell the team that right now that we have the 2-seed if we can take care of business, I know that fires the guys up, and I think with Philly losing, it sounds like we’ve got a chance at the other one, too. Our playoffs started a long time ago is the way we look at it, and we’re going to keep it going.”