49ers

Tom Brady could replace Jimmy G if 49ers lose Super Bowl, Skip Bayless says

Tom Brady could replace Jimmy G if 49ers lose Super Bowl, Skip Bayless says

All season long, 49ers players have been trying to get the media to give Jimmy Garoppolo credit for their success.

Despite Garoppolo's record as a starting quarterback and regular-season stats, most in the national media see him as the 49ers' weak link heading into their Super Bowl LIV matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Then there's Skip Bayless, who took the Jimmy G bashing five levels too far.

"If Tom Brady were the quarterback of the 49ers going into this Super Bowl, they would be a five-point favorite instead of a one-and-a-half point underdog," Bayless said on FS1's "Undisputed" on Monday. "You know it and I know it because what is the X-factor we are about to talk about for the next two weeks? What is the potential Achilles heel for the 49ers? Who is the guy that Kyle Shanahan will do his darndest to keep the ball out of his hands?

"It's Jimmy Garoppolo."

Yes, the 49ers are 1.5-point underdogs. But that's because of the Chiefs' high-powered offense. Garoppolo is 19-5 as a starter with San Francisco. He's thrown 44 touchdown passes in his career and has been intercepted just 21 times.

Garoppolo is not a top-tier quarterback, but he's not the 49ers' Achilles heel.

But wait, there's more.

"If Tom Brady were the quarterback, he would be so much more poised because Jimmy can go deer-in-headlights, he's much more accurate than Jimmy G is," Bayless continued. "He's just more trustworthy under fire especially in Super Bowls, which Tom Brady has mostly owned. He's 6-3 in Super Bowls and to me, he's not getting any older.

"You think he's done, he's over the hill, he's washed up."

Of course Brady is more trustworthy, Skip. He's in the conversation for best quarterback of all time. Garoppolo has two career playoff starts.

Bayless saved his best hot take for last. Get ready for this one, 49ers fans.

"Here's my final takeaway," Bayless said. "If by chance, I'll knock on wood for the 49ers, if Jimmy G becomes the reason by far that they lose this Super Bowl, if he throws three picks and completely unravels and just looks awful in the face of Patrick Mahomes, I would not be shocked if John Lynch, the 49ers GM, if he doesn't in the offseason make a play for Tom Brady because it has been written several times that they could get out from under Jimmy G without any huge salary cap hit."

That's right. Skip Bayless just suggested that the 49ers would replace the 28-year-old Garoppolo with the 42-year-old Brady.

Bayless is off his rocker, but we already knew that.

[RELATED: Five 49ers-Chiefs matchups to watch]

There's no way the 49ers are moving on from Garoppolo this offseason, no matter what he does in the Super Bowl on Feb. 2. He is the face of the franchise and under contract for three more seasons.

Garoppolo was supposed to replace Brady in New England. That didn't work out. Now, there's no chance Brady replaces Garoppolo in San Francisco.

NFL Draft 2020: 49ers consider all options while preparing for long wait on draft day

NFL Draft 2020: 49ers consider all options while preparing for long wait on draft day

INDIANAPOLIS. Ind. -- One year ago when the 49ers descended upon the NFL Scouting Combine, they knew they would be able to select their most-prized draft prospect.

In part because of the way defensive end Nick Bosa produced after being the No. 2 overall pick in the draft, the 49ers will be waiting a long time this year before making their first selection.

“It’s fun this time of the year having the low (draft pick) and being able to look at the Bosas of the world and those guys, but it’s a lot more fun playing deep into the year so you take the later pick,” 49ers general manager John Lynch said.

The 49ers finished the regular season with 13 wins, won the NFC West, earned homefield advantage throughout the NFC playoffs and advanced to the Super Bowl. The 49ers would rather be drafting at No. 32. But after letting a 10-point lead get away in a 31-20 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV, the 49ers select at No. 31.

The options of which player the 49ers could end up with their first pick are endless. They also know they will not be in a position of selecting a player who will be guaranteed big money throughout the course of a four-year contract.

“There's not as much pressure getting to know all the top guys in the draft,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said.

The 49ers dealt away their picks in the second, third and fourth rounds to acquire edge rusher Dee Ford and wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders. The 49ers’ next scheduled pick after their spot near the end of the first round will come in the fifth round.

“We don’t have as much equity as we’ve had in year’s past so we’ve got to figure out a way,” Lynch said. “We’ve got to be creative. We got to be exhaustive in all the avenues we look at to improve our football team and we are committed to doing that.”

The strength of the 49ers’ roster is near the top of the NFL. But the club still has several areas to address, such as wide receiver, offensive line, defensive line and the defensive backfield. What occurs for the 49ers during free agency, which begins in mid-March, will determine the immediate needs the team will look to fill in the draft.

Shanahan and his staff are about five weeks behind their usual offseason because of their Super Bowl run. The team’s coaches are working on going through their season evaluations of each of the players from last season. They are also working on evaluating the options on the free-agent market and in the draft.

The coaches came to the combine to begin the process of learning about the draft prospects. Shanahan and his offensive assistants completed interviews with players on that side of the ball on Wednesday and were on the first flight out of Indianapolis on Thursday morning. They will watch the on-field workouts on video back at the team’s headquarters in Santa Clara.

“You can eliminate a lot of people when you're at No. 2,” Shanahan said. “You don't have to put as much time into everyone. You still do it, but when you're at No. 31, you have to be ready for anything.”

“Also, you don't just sit there and look at your draft and say, 'All right, we've got to know (Nos.) 1 through 31, but then we can chill to the fourth or fifth round and take a day off.’ Things change. There's always trades and different draft picks.”

It seems logical the 49ers would want to accumulate more draft picks. If they can find a team that wants the No. 31 overall pick, the 49ers could move back -- and, perhaps, move back again and again -- to acquire a selections in the second, third or fourth rounds.

[RELATED49ers should watch these receivers during the combine

“I think the important part right now is that we are prepared for all scenarios and so the best way to do that is to do our due diligence in terms of getting ready for the draft class, the free-agent class and evaluating our own players,” Lynch said.

“So that’s our mind set. I think those things will take care of themselves is our plan, and kind of our vision for making our team better this year develops further. But, right now, the most important part is that we work really hard in trying to assess the talents and the opportunities to improve our team.”

49ERS 2020 DRAFT PICKS
1. First round: Own pick; No. 31
2. Fifth round: Denver pick from WR Emmanuel Sanders trade; No. 156
3. Fifth round: Own pick; No. 176
4. Sixth round: Own pick; No. 210
5. Seventh round: Detroit pick for LB Eli Harold, 2018; No. 217
6. Seventh round: Own pick; No. 245

Original picks traded:
Second-round pick traded to Kansas City for DE Dee Ford

Third- and fourth-round picks traded to Denver for WR Emmanuel Sanders

49ers' Kyle Shanahan won't try to change George Kittle's physical play

49ers' Kyle Shanahan won't try to change George Kittle's physical play

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- In the final moments of the 49ers' Week 14 win over the Saints in New Orleans, Jimmy Garoppolo threw an eight-yard pass to George Kittle on fourth-and-2, who ran 31 yards after the catch with three defenders attempting to tackle him. 

Even with Saints safety Marcus Williams hanging from Kittle’s face mask, the 49ers' tight end couldn't be taken down.

That image of Kittle running down the sideline personifies his bruising style of play. He has thrived with the mentality that he is going to hit defenders harder than they can hit him. It can cause opposing players to take “creative angles” when Kittle has the ball in his hands. 

Kittle also is a huge key to the success of the 49ers run game. He takes pride in his run-blocking and enjoys taking on defensive ends, which at times, outweigh him by several pounds. 

That high level of contact obviously can be the cause of more wear and tear on the body, but 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said Tuesday that he would never try to take away that element away from Kittle’s repertoire. His request to Kittle is a different type of goal. 

“I tell him to try to score every play,” Shanahan said. “He doesn’t need to go hurt himself, but tell him to try to score every play. I think that’s why we’re all talking about him right now, because he actually does, and he plays a certain way. 

“I understand there are questions. That’s a business decision, and sometimes that’s not always a good decision, because now you’re not who you are. You’re not as good of a player."

Kittle knows his physical play can result in injuries, but he isn't changing any time soon. He played much of the 2018 season with a rib injury. Even after what is sure to be a sizable contract extension, his head coach knows that will not change. 

“That’s not how Kittle plays,” Shanahan said. “It’s not like, ‘Hey we need you to be tough here.’ That’s just who he is. That’s why he’s special. That’s why he’s different than a lot of people. We could try to take that away from him, which would make him not as good of a player.” 

[RELATED: Why 49ers' receiver group will look different next season]

Shanahan tries to get the ball in Kittle's hands with open space, resulting in Kittle leading the 49ers with two 1,000-yard receiving seasons, and breaking the single-season tight end receiving record. 

“That’s why we try to get him outside some, and things like that,” Shanahan said. “But good luck with George and that. George knows what he enjoys, and that’s why he’s one of the better players in the league."