All Jimmy Garoppolo did just one year removed from a torn ACL was lead the 49ers to 13 wins, a NFC West title and Super Bowl appearance last season. And yet he continues having to give his best Rodney Dangerfield impersonation, still searching for respect.
The latest case is a poll conducted by ESPN. More than 50 NFL executives, coaches, scouts and players were asked to pick their top 10 quarterbacks in the game right now. Once again, the 49ers' signal-caller didn't get much love.
Garoppolo only received two top-10 votes.
"He's a pure pocket guy with a great release and his teammates love him. He's probably got a ceiling, but I think he's a really good quarterback in this league," a veteran coach said of Garoppolo.
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Garoppolo had his hiccups in his first full season in Kyle Shanahan's system, but he still was very good despite. He ranked in the top five in touchdowns (27), completion percentage (69.1) and yards per attempt (8.4) while totaling 3,978 passing yards. Those might not be elite numbers, however, they do rank him among the NFL's best QBs.
Seattle Seahawks star Russell Wilson was ranked as the second-best quarterback in the league right now, and Arizona Cardinals dual-threat QB Kyler Murray received five top-10 votes. That places Garoppolo as the third-best quarterback in the NFC West in the eyes of those who voted.
Wilson obviously is ahead of Garoppolo, and if it wasn't for Patrick Mahomes, he would hold the top spot. There's an argument for both Garoppolo and Murray as the NFC West's silver-medal quarterback, and that will have to be decided on the field this year. Truth be told, Garoppolo deserves more respect but probably sits right outside the top 10 of QBs currently in the NFL.
There is a flurry of stars at the position right now. Optics didn't help Garoppolo's case when Shanahan took the ball out of his hands for much of the playoffs, and Jimmy G's late collapse in Super Bowl LIV doesn't help either. That also doesn't mean all he did to get San Francisco to the Super Bowl should be ignored.
The only way for Garoppolo to prove he's a top-10 QB in the league is to do so on the field. For now, this is just more fuel to the fire.