49ers

Texans' O'Brien praises Garoppolo, but stops short of comparing him to all-time great

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AP

Texans' O'Brien praises Garoppolo, but stops short of comparing him to all-time great

Houston Texans head coach Bill O’Brien was not ready to make any comparisons to Tom Brady, a quarterback he knows well, but he had plenty of praise Tuesday for new 49ers starter Jimmy Garoppolo.

“Jimmy is a very talented guy,” O’Brien said on a conference call with Bay Area reporters. “He’s got a quick release. He’s got very good instincts as to how to play the position. Accurate passer. I know how they felt about him in New England, and I know it’s going to be a tough challenge for us.

“Jimmy plays the game in a very efficient way. He just does a good job of reacting and playing the position with good instincts and understanding of what the coach wants from the play and how to execute the play.”

Garoppolo studied Brady for years before he joined the New England Patriots in 2014 as a second-round draft pick. O’Brien was on the Patriots’ offensive staff from 2007 to 2011. Garoppolo was Brady's backup for 3 1/2 seasons before he was sent to the 49ers in a trade for a second-round draft pick.

Garoppolo had an impressive starting debut with the 49ers, throwing for 293 yards and leading a fourth-quarter comeback for a 15-14 victory over the Chicago Bears. Garoppolo will get his second start for the 49ers on Sunday against the Texans.

Garoppolo takes over as the 49ers starter after Brian Hoyer opened the first six games. C.J. Beathard started the next five before Garoppolo got his chance.

“I wouldn’t say they changed a whole lot,” O’Brien said. “I think Kyle (Shanahan) does a great job. He’s one of the best play-callers in this league – and play-designers. And I think they do things to suit the skillsets of their quarterbacks and the players around him.

“They’re building a foundation there and they’re building it the right way. They are pro coaches, so they understand when a guy comes in after the halfway point, they got to get the guy ready to play and that’s what they do.”

Source: 49ers sign son of former NFL WR

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USATSI

Source: 49ers sign son of former NFL WR

The 49ers have signed wide receiver Max McCaffrey off the Green Bay Packers’ practice squad, a source confirmed Tuesday to NBC Sports Bay Area.

The NFL Network first reported the 49ers’ move.

The team could place wide receiver Victor Bolden on injured reserve to make roster space for McCaffrey. Bolden sustained an ankle injury in the 49ers’ 26-16 victory Sunday over the Houston Texans.

McCaffrey (6 foot 2, 200 pounds) is a second-year player from Duke. He is the son of former NFL receiver Ed McCaffrey and the older brother of former Stanford star and Carolina Panthers rookie Christian McCaffrey.

Max McCaffrey appeared in five games this season for the Jacksonville Jaguars, catching one pass for 4 yards.

He originally signed with the Raiders as an undrafted rookie and spent time with Green Bay, New Orleans and Jacksonville before returning to the Packers’ practice squad in October.

Shanahan: Garoppolo's two starts do not impact contract situation

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USATSI

Shanahan: Garoppolo's two starts do not impact contract situation

Jimmy Garoppolo has thrown for more yards than any quarterback in 49ers history in his first two starts.

But 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said Garoppolo’s play has not changed how he views the contract situation that must be addressed before the start of the new league year in March.

The 49ers acquired Garoppolo in a late-October trade with the New England Patriots. He is under contract only through the end of this season. The 49ers will retain Garoppolo with the franchise tag if the sides are unable to reach agreement on a multi-year deal.

“For me personally, it doesn't impact anything,” Shanahan said. “I thought it was so neat about the situation that I didn't feel that, because of that (franchise) option, that we had to see something here or there, and we had to do all this stuff.

“It's been able for us to just try to do things the right way, put him in when we thought he was ready to, not put any pressure on him where he has to do all this to show something. Obviously, we're very encouraged with how these two games have been.”

The 49ers must designate Garoppolo as their franchise player at any point from Feb. 20 to March 6. Last year, the one-year cost for a franchise player at quarterback was $21.268 million.

In leading the 49ers to back-to-back road victories, Garoppolo threw for 293 yards against the Chicago Bears and 334 yards against the Houston Texans. Garoppolo is scheduled to make his first home start on Sunday against the Tennessee Titans at Levi's Stadium.

“We'll see what happens here in the offseason when we get together and can assess everything,” Shanahan said. “I definitely don't think that’s something he's thinking about at this point, and it's definitely not something I'm thinking about, either.”

Shanahan said he does not anticipate the sides working out a contract extension during the final three weeks of the regular season.