49ers

Jimmy Garoppolo takes ownership for 49ers' lack of completions vs. Seahawks

Jimmy Garoppolo takes ownership for 49ers' lack of completions vs. Seahawks

SANTA CLARA — New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s wife, Gisele Bundchen, had a valid point after Super Bowl XLVI: that it takes two players to complete a pass in football, and even her six-time champion husband can't do it all. 
 
After several dropped passes in the 49ers' 27-24 loss to the Seahawks, San Francisco signal-caller Jimmy Garoppolo echoed the same philosophy but instead, took much more of the onus on himself. 

“Whenever there are drops, it takes the guy throwing the ball and [the guy] catching the ball,” Garoppolo said on Wednesday. “Obviously I could throw it better to make it easier for those guys.”

Garoppolo only completed 24 of his 46 attempts for 248 yards which is just over 52 percent, his lowest completion rate of the season. Even in Week 7 in rainy Washington, where he had a lower rating, he had a slightly higher completion percentage of 57 percent.  

Jimmy G is consistent with every report from the 49ers' locker room over the past three seasons that there is no finger pointing. Rather, it’s a consensus that everyone needs to be better at their job collectively to improve as a team. 

“Those guys work their ass off,” Garoppolo said of his receivers. “They really do. They come in every day with a good mindset and it’s just when your number gets called you have to take advantage of the opportunities because in the league, we all know, you don’t get too many of them, so when you do, you have to take advantage of it.”  

Outside of Emmanuel Sanders, who left the game early with a rib injury, the receiving group in Santa Clara is young. Rookie Deebo Samuel was Garoppolo's top target on Monday night. Marquise Goodwin is the only member of the group that has at least three full seasons worth of experience under his belt. He was only on the field for 10 snaps against the Seahawks. 

Because the group is young, Garoppolo has to find a balance between giving constructive criticism to players and pumping up their confidence after mistakes. 

“There’s a fine line between it,” Garoppolo said. “You want to pick guys up especially after a tough drop or whatever it is but like I said before, it takes a guy to throw the ball and catch the ball to complete a pass. I just got to be more accurate. Make it easier for those guys and help them out.”

[RELATED: Sanders remains 'day to day' for 49ers with ribs still sore

Garoppolo, who spent extra time with Sanders upon his arrival to work on their chemistry, is always willing to do the same with all of his receivers. He is not worried about the offense bouncing back as a group, wide receivers in particular. 

“Obviously the more reps you get, the more practice, the better off you’ll be,” Garoppolo said. “But we’ve been pretty good up until this point. Had a little bit of a fluke in the last game with the drops and everything but you can’t overstress it. Let those guys go play, let them play ball. They are going to make plays, they are good players out there.”  

NFL rumors: Odell Beckham Jr. wants to leave Browns after one season

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USATSI

NFL rumors: Odell Beckham Jr. wants to leave Browns after one season

The Odell Beckham Jr. era in Cleveland reportedly could be over after just one season.

Fox Sports' Jay Glazer reported Sunday that the Browns receiver, who the 49ers pursued this offseason, wants out of Ohio. 

"[Throughout] this year, Odell Beckham has actually told other players and coaches before games, during games, 'Hey, come get me. Come get me out of here,'" Glazer said Sunday on "FOX NFL Sunday." "Remember: It was not Odell's choice to go to the Cleveland Browns. He got traded there. There now also is reports he needs sports hernia surgery. I've gotta say, I don't see that relationship ending well for them after this year."

The Browns acquired Beckham in a blockbuster trade with the New York Giants this offseason, but things have not gone according to plan in Cleveland. Beckham as 57 catches for 805 yards and just two touchdowns this season, and Cleveland.com's Mary Kay Cabot cited multiple sources describing the Browns' offense as "dysfunctional." 

As Glazer noted, Beckham reportedly is playing through a sports hernia. NFL Media's Ian Rapoport reported Sunday that Beckham will need surgery and he has mostly been limited in practices. 

Beckham remains under contract through 2024, after signing a massive extension with the Giants last August. His demand rather than his team's motivation to move him would drive a potential trade this offseason, and it's fair to wonder if changing circumstances on the 49ers' part would affect their interest. 

Defensive lineman DeForest Buckner, tight end George Kittle and breakout defensive end Arik Armstead are all eligible to sign contract extensions this season. Armstead can become a free agent this offseason, while Kittle and Buckner can do the same in 2021. Whether or not the 49ers retain Armstead, it could prove difficult to bring in Beckham given San Francisco's existing salary commitments.

Over The Cap lists the 49ers as having just over $16 million in salary-cap room heading into the offseason. Parting ways with players such as injured running back Jerick McKinnon could free up space, but Beckham will carry a cap hit of at least $14.25 million in each of the next four seasons. It's also hard to envision Beckham wanting to restructure his deal after being surpassed by Julio Jones as the NFL's highest-paid receiver.

[RELATED: 49ers' Kittle on pace for best tight end season of PFF era]

The financial concerns are real, but a down season in a historically downtrodden organization shouldn't be what dissuades the 49ers from pursuing Beckham if he is made available or demands a trade. Kyle Shanahan's offense can't exactly be described as "dysfunctional." 

Beckham tweeted Friday that he didn't say he was unhappy in Cleveland, but that he is "hopeful for better results." Whether that hope takes him elsewhere will be a storyline to monitor all offseason. 

49ers center Weston Richburg carted off field in Week 14 vs. Saints

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AP

49ers center Weston Richburg carted off field in Week 14 vs. Saints

The 49ers lost a key to their offensive line with just over 10 minutes left in the third quarter Sunday against the Saints in New Orleans. 

Center Weston Richburg was carted off the field with an injury to his right knee and ankle. Richburg's right leg got caught on guard Mike Person's left leg, causing the center's leg to awkwardly bend as he went to the ground. 

San Francisco officially ruled Richburg out for the game.

[RELATED: 49ers' Ford aggravates hamstring, ruled out vs. Saints]

The 49ers had 339 total yards to the Saints' 265 at the time of Richburg's injury, but they trailed 30-28. Ben Garland took over for Richburg, and the 49ers immediately scored a touchdown on their first drive without their starting center. 

The 49ers signed Richburg to a five-year contract in March 2018.