49ers

Bomani Jones rips Jimmy Garoppolo, says 49ers are QB short of Super Bowl win

Bomani Jones rips Jimmy Garoppolo, says 49ers are QB short of Super Bowl win

If Jimmy Garoppolo had hit Emmanuel Sanders on a deep pass with less two minutes remaining in Super Bowl LIV, we might be talking about the 49ers' quarterback as the MVP of the game.

Instead, Garoppolo overshot Sanders by five yards and the 49ers went on to lose to the Chiefs, 31-20.

The missed opportunity, combined with Garoppolo's subpar play throughout the entire game, gave national pundits plenty of meat to chew on.

During Monday's episode of "High Noon" on ESPN, hosts Bomani Jones and Pablo Torre had a heated discussion about Garoppolo. Jones has been a vocal critic of Jimmy G, while Torre believes in the quarterback. So when Torre tried to shift blame from Garoppolo to head coach Kyle Shanahan, Jones responded with this:

"You're going to get out here every week riding with this dude when the only thing you really know about him is that he's handsome," Jones said. "And you're going to ride this all the way out. And then when the time comes you think you're somehow going to take the joy away from me from looking at you and saying 'Everything I told you all season long as to why they wouldn't win a Super Bowl with that dude happened in that game.' And guess what? He looked like that same dude all the way through the playoffs. He didn't come in here and show you anything new. This is what he was. In fact, he might have played better in this game than in any other game in the playoffs and Kyle Shanahan was there to watch all of that. Kyle Shanahan had all that film and Kyle Shanahan still put the game into that dude's hands at a time where he did not have to. So, who gets the blame? The answer is all of them get the blame."

When Torre said that Garoppolo was still young and has room to improve, Jones snapped back and this exchange followed:

Jones: "Are you trying to talk about the future of him?"

Torre: "Of course, because he has started as many games as Sam Darnold has."

Jones: "So?" 

Torre: "He is not a finished product yet. Jimmy Garoppolo can still get better."

Jones: "Are you serious? Are you really trying to talk about this dude like he's 22 years old and fresh-faced and everything else? How long has he been in the league? It's not like he just got here from college. How long has he been in the league? He has been in situations to develop and to improve and this is as good as he is right now because the dude is just not that good. Sometimes there's a reason a dude gets drafted in the third round. Sometimes there's a reason a dude winds up being a backup for all that time, right? Because of someone really saw a first-class take-over-your-franchise kind of guy, you can trade that and get more back than a second-round pick. Look man, they are a quarterback away from being able to win a Super Bowl."

[RELATED: Frank Clark blasts Jimmy G]

That's some harsh criticism from Jones. In fairness to Garoppolo, he did lead the 49ers to the Super Bowl. But he didn't play well, so it gives credibility to Jones' argument.

That leaves Garoppolo with only one thing to do: Get back to the Super Bowl with the 49ers and win it so he can prove Jones wrong.

2020 NFL Draft: How 49ers' John Lynch prepares while working from home

johnlynchap.jpg
AP

2020 NFL Draft: How 49ers' John Lynch prepares while working from home

The 2020 NFL Draft will be held as scheduled -- albeit remotely -- amid the coronavirus pandemic, keeping 49ers general manager John Lynch plenty busy during California's shelter-in-place order.

In-person visits with prospects at the team's facility or elsewhere are off, but Lynch said he is able to make the most of watching film of potential picks while working from his home office.

“People have a lot bigger problems than we do, I can tell you that,” Lynch told NBC Sports' Peter King for his "Football Morning in America" column. “This year’s a lot different than any year scouts and GMs have had, obviously, with all the challenges. But this time of year, what you really need is time.

"The other day, [coach] Kyle [Shanahan] called and said, ‘This is unbelievable! I’m getting so much done.’ And he’s right. He and I, this time of year, would be watching this tape in our offices, and the difference is our doors aren’t getting knocked on 50 times a day. I’m really getting a lot done.”

Lynch and Shanahan have more prospects to examine than they did a month ago. The 49ers acquired another first-round draft pick -- No. 13 overall -- when they traded dominant defensive lineman DeForest Buckner to the Indianapolis Colts. San Francisco, before then, was scheduled to make its first pick with the No. 31 overall selection.

[RELATED: 49ers' Jones switches agencies entering final year of deal]

That additional prep very well could've included watching Louisville's Mekhi Becton, whose Cardinals were on-screen in footage Lynch was watching during a video posted to social media last week showing how he was preparing for the draft at home. The offensive lineman is projected to be a top-10 pick next month, and Lynch simply wouldn't have had much reason to watch him with the 49ers' first pick set for the very end of the first round.

We'll know some of the players whom Lynch, Shanahan and the rest of the 49ers closely watched when the NFL draft begins April 23. The 49ers currently have seven picks: Two in the first round, two in the fifth, one in the sixth and two in the seventh.

Colts' DeForest Buckner, Sheldon Day driven by 49ers' Super Bowl loss

daybucknerusatsi.jpg
USATSI

Colts' DeForest Buckner, Sheldon Day driven by 49ers' Super Bowl loss

Sheldon Day and DeForest Buckner will be teammates on a new team next season, driven by the last loss with their old one.

The defensive linemen joined the Indianapolis Colts this offseason via free agency and trade, respectively, after playing together for the 49ers since midway through the 2017 season. Day and Buckner's final games with San Francisco were in the 49ers' 31-20 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV, and Day said the pair has additional motivation after not lifting the Vince Lombardi Trophy last season.

"It was right there in our hands, and all we had to do was squeeze it and grab it (in Super Bowl LIV), and we let up," Day told reporters on his introductory conference call last week (via Colts.com). "So ultimately we have a chip on our shoulders and we know how to get there, and now we know what to do to overcome that shortcoming that we had."

Buckner sacked eventual Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes 1.5 times in the game, accounting for three of the 49ers' nine QB hits. Day, meanwhile, played a little over half of San Francisco's 76 defensive snaps and picked up a tackle.

[RELATED: 49ers' Jones switches agencies entering final year of deal]

The Indianapolis native played in a career-high 16 games with the 49ers during the 2019 regular season, and Day started each of San Francisco's playoff games. Day credited his growth to playing with Buckner, and he's going to continue picking his brain while they're still teammates.

"DeForest (has) made me detail my game," Day said. "So we would be working on pass-rush moves, bouncing ideas off of each other, just trying to make sure that our game grew together, and we're always giving each other tips. If I see something on film [I'm reaching] out to him, and vice versa. So, man, what a special guy he is."

All the while, the 49ers' Super Bowl LIV won't be far from either player's mind.