49ers

Jerry Rice believes 49ers could play in Super Bowl after 5-0 start

Jerry Rice believes 49ers could play in Super Bowl after 5-0 start

The 49ers have Jerry Rice's stamp of approval. He has seen enough -- Rice is a believer. 

Rice first said he thinks the 49ers could be Super Bowl contenders after they blew out the Bengals, 41-17, in Week 2. After beating the reigning NFC champion Rams 20-7 on Sunday, it sounds like Rice is ready to book a trip to Miami for Super Bowl LIV. 

"Yes, without a doubt," Rice said Monday on 95.7 The Game when asked if this team could reach the Super Bowl. "But they have to continue to focus on their craft, get better on offense and also defense, and come together tight as a team. 

"If they do that and they don't have any severe injuries or anything like that, I think they have a legitimate chance." 

The 49ers already are dealing with some tough injuries, but have been able to overcome them so far. They were without starting offensive tackles Joe Staley and Mike McGlinchey in their win over the Rams, along with starting fullback Kyle Juszczyk.

San Francisco now is 5-0 for the first time since the 1990 season, and is the final NFC team to remain undefeated. The Patriots are the only other team in the NFL without a loss through six weeks. 

When the 49ers won their first five games 29 years ago, they went on to go 14-2 and win the NFC West. But it did not end in a Super Bowl victory, as they fell to the Giants in the NFC Championship Game. 

[RELATED: Why it's time to recognize 5-0 49ers as an elite NFL team]

This 2019 team has a chance to stay undefeated for a while. Two of their next three opponents -- Washington and Arizona -- have a combined 3-8-1 record. More wins surely could be on the way, but does that mean you should book a flight to Florida for Feb. 2, 2020? 

Jerry Rice certainly can. We don't all have Jerry Rice money, though.

49ers place receiver Marquise Goodwin on season-ending injured reserve

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AP

49ers place receiver Marquise Goodwin on season-ending injured reserve

The 49ers placed wide receiver Marquise Goodwin on injured reserve Tuesday, ending his season and, possibly, his time with the organization.

Goodwin did not play in Sunday’s game against the New Orleans Saints after being listed as questionable with knee and foot issues.

“He’s dealing with some chronic stuff,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said Monday. “We’re evaluating treatment options right now.”

Goodwin, 29, appeared in nine games this season with six starts. He had just 12 catches for 186 yards and one touchdown.

The 49ers signed Goodwin on the first day of free agency in 2017. After four seasons with the Buffalo Bills, Goodwin had a breakout season in his first season with the club. Goodwin posted career-best numbers with 56 catches for 962 yards and two touchdowns.

Goodwin appeared in 36 games with the 49ers over the past three seasons, catching 91 passes for 1,543 yards and seven touchdowns.

[RELATED: Jimmy G putting up historic numbers among 49ers QBs]

Goodwin is signed through the 2021 season, but it appears unlikely the club will bring him back next season due to his contract, which has exceeded his production. He is scheduled to make $4.5 million in salary and bonuses. Goodwin has also stated his intention of trying to qualify for the Olympics next year in the long jump.

After winning the U.S. Olympic trials in 2012, Goodwin competed in the 2012 London Olympics. He placed 10th after heading into the final as the No. 1 qualifier. Injuries derailed his bid for a spot on the 2016 U.S. Olympic team that competed in Brazil.

Jimmy Garoppolo putting together one of most prolific passing seasons in 49ers' history

Jimmy Garoppolo putting together one of most prolific passing seasons in 49ers' history

Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is putting up one of the most prolific passing seasons in 49ers history, despite the team relying heavily on a running game while playing in the lead for much of their 11-2 start.

Only the Baltimore Ravens have attempted more running plays than the 49ers this season, which has cut into the number of passing attempts for Garoppolo. But he also has benefited from the balance of the team’s offense, which has kept opposing defenses honest.

At 249.6 yards passing per game, Garoppolo is on pace to throw for 3,993 yards this season. The 49ers have produced only three 4,000-yard passing seasons in franchise history. Steve Young did it twice, and Jeff Garcia threw for a team-record 4,278 in 2000.

“The more Jimmy gets to play, the more experiences he has, I think the more wisdom he has out there and the more consistently he plays,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said on The 49ers Insider Podcast.

Among 49ers quarterbacks who have thrown for 3,500 or more yards in a season, there only have been five passer ratings of better than 100. Steve Young did it three times, while Joe Montana did it twice.

Garoppolo’s passer rating is 103.9. Six of his past seven games have featured ratings of 110 or better. During that seven-game stretch, Garoppolo completed 70.4 percent of his passes for 1,931 yards with 18 touchdowns and five interceptions.

Garoppolo ranks 12th in the NFL with 3,245 yards passing. Of quarterbacks who have attempted 300 or more passes this season, Garoppolo ranks tied for second, along with Dak Prescott and Patrick Mahomes, at 8.3 yards per attempt. Kirk Cousins leads the league at 8.4 yards per attempt.

He leads the league with 40.5 percent of his pass attempts being completed for first downs. Garoppolo has led fourth quarter comebacks and game-winning drives this season against Pittsburgh, Arizona and New Orleans.

Garoppolo engineered three go-ahead drives on Sunday in the 49ers’ 48-46 victory over the Saints. He enabled the 49ers to kick a field goal in the fourth quarter, giving the 49ers a 45-40 lead, when he scrambled for 2 yards on a third-and-2 play to the San Francisco 35-yard line.

[RELATED: What 49ers QB Jimmy Garoppolo did to impress Kyle Shanahan]

“That was huge,” Shanahan said. “Jimmy made a lot of plays in that game that there were some looks that you expect him to be automatic on and throw good balls, and he did.

“He didn’t miss any of the open ones, but there was a number of plays where he didn’t have a good play and he’d keep it alive and made some plays out there that weren’t necessarily there in rhythm.”