Comeback player of the year: Jimmy Garoppolo

Getty Images

The 49ers were the sexy darkhorse pick before the 2018 season. That lasted until Week Three when Jimmy Garoppolo tore an anterior cruciate ligament.

The 49ers finished 4-12.

Fast forward to the 2019 preseason: No one expected anything out of Garoppolo and the 49ers.

Yet, here they are: The No. 1 seed in the NFC, with Garoppolo having directed them to a 13-3 record.

For that, Garoppolo is PFT’s comeback player of the year. He beat out a load of worthy candidates, including Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill, Raiders tight end Darren Waller, Vikings running back Dalvin Cook, Cowboys center Travis Frederick, Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen and Ravens safety Earl Thomas.

The 49ers traded a second-round pick for Garoppolo, who spent 3 1/2 seasons behind Tom Brady in New England, and gave him a $137.5 million deal after only five starts for them.

Garoppolo proved he is a franchise quarterback this season in his first full season as a starter. He completed 69.1 percent of his passes for 3,978 yards with 27 touchdowns, 13 interceptions and a 102.0 passer rating.

52 responses to “Comeback player of the year: Jimmy Garoppolo

  1. mashoaf says:
    January 1, 2020 at 5:09 pm
    Shouldn’t comeback player of the year be someone who had previously played a full season?
    ——-
    You obviously have no idea what comeback player of the year means. Andrew Luck, Eric Berry didn’t play a full year the year prior. Hence that they “came back” the year after and did outstanding.

  2. Watching Jimmy G play qb is fun. He makes multiple reads on pass plays. Kaep would make one read and not see the wide open guy down field. I’ve also seen Kaep not audible out of a run play when both receivers had nobody covering them pre-snap. What a difference a true qb makes.

  3. I know Patriot fans wish Jimmy was kept over Brady. Now Patriot fan will turn into cowboy fans talking about the past as Father Time eats away Brady’s cheating career

  4. Lamar should win this award as well. He was dogged and criticized all last season. He worked hard during the off season, came back and took the league by storm.

  5. TribeOfOne says:
    January 1, 2020 at 5:22 pm
    Watching Jimmy G play qb is fun. He makes multiple reads on pass plays

    ————

    Any decent QB makes multiple reads in pass plays

  6. u4iadman says:
    January 1, 2020 at 5:16 pm
    Absolute joke.

    Ryan Tannehill by far.

    —————————————–

    Yeah I’m sure that’s a totally objective opinion coming from a Raider fan.

  7. Even as a Vikes fan I didn’t consider Ev, but to be honest, having a complete mental breakdown with the whole nation knowing, and then coming back and having his best complete year of football is a whole other kind of nuts. He’s well deserving.

  8. So you’re saying the difference between 4-12 and 13-3 is Jimmy Garoppolo? I don’t follow the Niners but I find it hard to believe that one player…any player, could make that kind of difference. Surely there is much more to their turnaround than that? Niners fans, help me out with this?

  9. Once again the Titans getting snubbed. AJ Brown and Tannehill deserved awards more than the two who got them. I don’t even know what Jimmy G came back from. He’s been really good his entire career, so far. Has anybody ever doubted him? Tannehill was widely considered washed up, so much so his own team traded him. Nobody saw his and the Titans playoff push coming. Who DIDN’T think Jimmy G and the Niners had a strong playoff chance?

  10. I know Patriot fans wish Jimmy was kept over Brady.

    ===

    Not this fan. Since the trade, two SB appearances. Playoffs this year.

    Nothing to complain about.

    They couldn’t keep them both.

  11. Lots of exciting RW3-Jimmy G games in the future. Both of those games were in the NFL networks top 5 games of 2019.

  12. thecape15 says:
    January 1, 2020 at 7:01 pm

    I know Patriot fans wish Jimmy was kept over Brady.

    ===

    Not this fan. Since the trade, two SB appearances. Playoffs this year.

    Nothing to complain about.

    They couldn’t keep them both.
    ____________________________________

    Let me ask you the same question 1 year from now.
    Don’t delude yourself, 75% of the starting the QBs in the league would have put up 7 points against the Rams to win that SB. Brady was not the reason NE won that game.

  13. Let me ask you the same question 1 year from now

    ====

    I never said anything about winning the SB.

    I am referring to the overall success of the team since the trade.

    But I know. It has to end.

  14. To comeback to me would mean comeback and play entire season…. Jimmy G played all 16 games… Ryan Tannehill did not so goes to Jimmy G easy peasy…

  15. He is more than that. He is a legit MVP candidate. He won as many games as a starter as Lamar Jackson (13 games) in 2019. His team was 4-12 (3-10 without him) the year before and 13-3 this season. Lamar Jackson’s Ravens were 10-6 last season, 4-5 if he was not the starter. Jimmy G. makes more of a difference to his club winning than Lamar Jackson. Therefore he is more valuable.

  16. “I don’t even know what Jimmy G came back from.”

    A torn ACL that caused him to miss nearly the entire season in 2018?

  17. @nite2al

    Don’t delude yourself. 95% of the QBs in this league would not have curb stomped the 12-4 Chargers for 41 points and then drove a dagger into the Chiefs with multiple 3rd and 10 conversions to win overtime after the Patriots defense gave up 24 points in the 4th QUARTER.

    Patriots offense didn’t have a great Super Bowl, but they got them there.

  18. I think Chris Boswell of the Pittsburgh Steelers should get a mention as well. He had a disastrous season in 2018 and came back this year as accurate as before.

  19. Garoppolo has the easiest QB gig in the league. San Fran has a great running game and the passing game is well-designed by a good offensive mind that gets Jimmy in a position to make easy, short completions that maximize YAC in order to mask his deficiencies as a thrower. Not impressed with him at all when compared to Drew Brees, Patrick Mahomes, Russell Wilson and others. Ryan Tannehill would have been a better pick.

  20. Of course he is not the ONLY reason why we have turned around from 4-12 to 13-3, but he is likely the biggest. Yes our D is better, Nick Bosa, Dee Ford and Alexander have been big additions. The D-Line causing pressure has helped the secondary out as QB’s don’t have all day to sit in the pocket and disect the D anymore.

    However, all one needs to do to backup the Jimmy G claim is look at his record. The guy wins football games. We were 1-10 when Jimmy 1st started for the 49ers back in 2017. He won 5 straight games with the same players, defense and ST that had just gone 1-10. He started 2018 1-1 before getting injured in the 3rd game, we went 2-12 in games that he didnt play/finish. He comes back (with a few upgrades as mentioned above, but mostly the same roster) and we go 13-3.

    2017-2019 with Jimmy G, 49ers record = 19-4
    2017-2019 without Jimmy G, 49ers record = 3-22

    ___________

    So you’re saying the difference between 4-12 and 13-3 is Jimmy Garoppolo? I don’t follow the Niners but I find it hard to believe that one player…any player, could make that kind of difference. Surely there is much more to their turnaround than that? Niners fans, help me out with this?

  21. Did it really surprise anyone? We know that Shanahan is a good coach, we know that Lynch was a good gm that was rapidly adding talent, and we were pretty sure that Jimmy G could get it done. My pick for the comeback player would obviously be Tannehill.

  22. SF4th&9ers says:
    January 2, 2020 at 6:25 am
    Of course he is not the ONLY reason why we have turned around from 4-12 to 13-3, but he is likely the biggest. Yes our D is better, Nick Bosa, Dee Ford and Alexander have been big additions. The D-Line causing pressure has helped the secondary out as QB’s don’t have all day to sit in the pocket and disect the D anymore.

    However, all one needs to do to backup the Jimmy G claim is look at his record. The guy wins football games. We were 1-10 when Jimmy 1st started for the 49ers back in 2017. He won 5 straight games with the same players, defense and ST that had just gone 1-10. He started 2018 1-1 before getting injured in the 3rd game, we went 2-12 in games that he didnt play/finish. He comes back (with a few upgrades as mentioned above, but mostly the same roster) and we go 13-3.

    2017-2019 with Jimmy G, 49ers record = 19-4
    2017-2019 without Jimmy G, 49ers record = 3-22

    ___________

    So you’re saying the difference between 4-12 and 13-3 is Jimmy Garoppolo? I don’t follow the Niners but I find it hard to believe that one player…any player, could make that kind of difference. Surely there is much more to their turnaround than that? Niners fans, help me out with this?

    ——

    Of course, Jimmy G is not the only reason for the turn around. Our defense has drastically improved. Drafting Bosa was huge. In addition to that, getting Kwon Alexander in FA. And then a lot of the other younger players have developed really nicely. The reality is, with the exception of the players I just mentioned, we were basically the same team last year, give or take. Since drafting Jimmy G, we are 20-5. When he went down last year, we were 3-10. He makes a big difference. He makes so bine headed mistakes but other than that, plays well and doesn’t get in his head about the picks and what not. Shanahan and Lynch have built a complete team through and through. Not perfect but they play for each other and not just themselves. That is another big part of their success this season.

  23. “He is more than that. He is a legit MVP candidate. He won as many games as a starter as Lamar Jackson (13 games) in 2019. His team was 4-12 (3-10 without him) the year before and 13-3 this season. Lamar Jackson’s Ravens were 10-6 last season, 4-5 if he was not the starter. Jimmy G. makes more of a difference to his club winning than Lamar Jackson. Therefore he is more valuable.”

    People really think he’s an MVP candidate? 27 TDs and 13 picks to Brady’s 24 TD’s 8 picks. With Kittle Sanders and Kyle Shanahan and the number 2 rushing offense in the league. Think about that for a second.

    Despite all those things going for him 49ers barely pulled out a division against a severely depleted Seahawks team..I dont know how people could watch that game and think Jimmy G is anywhere close to Russell Wilson or that he was anywhere near as good this season.

  24. 1 0 Rate This
    concriche says:
    People really think he’s an MVP candidate? 27 TDs and 13 picks to Brady’s 24 TD’s 8 picks. With Kittle Sanders and Kyle Shanahan and the number 2 rushing offense in the league. Think about that for a second.

    Despite all those things going for him 49ers barely pulled out a division against a severely depleted Seahawks team..I dont know how people could watch that game and think Jimmy G is anywhere close to Russell Wilson or that he was anywhere near as good this season.

    —————————————————

    Uh…the Seahawks barely beat the 49ers with a depleted offense and defense so I guess that makes Wilson bad too? Poor logic. Jimmy has been a difference maker, especially this last half of the season when the defense hasn’t been pulling their weight due to a ton of injuries and the running game isn’t nearly as good as it was in the beginning either.

  25. dayus49 poor logic? I compared an entire season where the 49ers barely took the top seed whilst having a much better roster whereas you chose to point to one game…where the 49ers still had a better roster and lost. Kittle is a difference maker and so is Bosa. Jimmy is good but stop with MVP and difference maker

  26. Two points that come to mind: Garoppolo is going to get much better over the coming five years. And, he has the best pure release I have ever seen, comparable only to Dan Marino. I think that makes him extra special.

  27. First off, ton of respect for Jimmy G this year and the season he’s had… but, was he ever really “here” before this year? This is not meant to diminish him, just saying he hasn’t played much before this year so comeback of the year seems misplaced. Anyway, more of a technicality…

  28. Jimmy was a big gamble-no the trade but the contract-and I am beyond ecstatic at how well the gamble has paid off. Knock on wood but 49ers are set up to be great for a while.

  29. Comeback player shouldn’t be for someone who just came back from an injury. It should go to someone whose career seemed over or down and they worked hard to come back. Someone more like Tannehill would be far more deserving.

  30. To comeback shouldn’t you be established first? He started 5 games in his career, this is more like a breakout reward. Tannehill’s career was considered over for the most part, he’s more deserving.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.