Your daily Golden Nuggets for Sunday, March 7, 2021
Greg Bedard has worked on the beat for the Dolphins, Packers, and Patriots for over a decade in various publications including Sports Illustrated and the Boston Globe. Bedard currently covers the Patriots at a website he founded called the Boston Sports Journal.
Earlier this week, Bedard said the optimal situation for the Patriots heading into the 2021 season is for Jimmy Garoppolo to be their starter. Here is the full four-minute video:
Bedard said that Patriots fans should be rooting for the 49ers to make a change at quarterback, as Garoppolo can’t play for New England if he’s still under center in San Francisco. Bedard also weighs in who wears the pants in the 49ers front office, Teddy Bridgewater as a Niner, what type of quarterback Kyle Shanahan prefers, and much more in the video above.
And Dwelley performed extremely well as Kittle’s understudy. Check out these numbers: Dwelley averaged 12.9 yards per catch in 2020, and Kittle averaged 13.2. Dwelley averaged 5.6 yards after the catch per reception, and Kittle averaged 6.2. And Dwelley caught 79.2 percent of his targets while Kittle caught 76.2 percent.
Dwelley did an admirable Kittle impression, and improved tremendously in the process. And Dwelley still has room to grow. He just turned 26 in January, and could become much more involved in the passing game next season if Kyle Juszczyk and/or Kendrick Bourne sign elsewhere in free agency.
However it plays out, the 49ers surely are discreetly looking for an upgrade. Why wouldn’t they? Of all positions other than kicker and punter, quarterbacks enjoy rules that maximize their ability to stay healthy. Garoppolo has failed to do that.
He also failed to do it in New England, which makes the Patriots’ interest in handing him the keys to the offense a little confusing. Garoppolo had a four-game audition in 2016 during Brady’s #Deflategate suspension, and Garoppolo got hurt in the second game.
It’s also impossible to forget the fact that Garoppolo’s performance in a divisional round win against the Vikings in January 2020 sufficiently freaked out coach Kyle Shanahan to take the ball out of Garoppolo’s hands, going run heavy for the rest of the win over Minnesota and making Garoppolo look like Bob Griese in the NFC Championship, with only eight passes thrown in the 37-20 win over the Packers.
This one is a no brainer. The 49ers currently have zero cornerbacks who have started a game for them under contract for 2021. To make the situation even more dire, other than Emmanuel Moseley, all of the starters from 2020 are unrestricted free agents, meaning the 49ers will need to outbid other teams for their services.
Look for the 49ers to add at least one cornerback through free agency and another through the early part of the draft.
49ers Trade Partner No. 4: Chicago Bears
The Bears are moving on from quarterback Mitchell Trubisky this offseason. And after yet another lackluster offensive season in Chicago, head coach Matt Nagy and general manager Ryan Pace are going to be under the microscope heading into 2021. If there ever was a time to be aggressive, likely involving a move to land one of the big names in an awfully top-heavy quarterbacking class, it’s now.
Chicago has each of its picks from Rounds 1 through 3, then fifth-, sixth- and seventh-round selections. It would at least take a first- and second-round pick for San Francisco to be interested. And perhaps Lynch would be able to squeeze another mid-round pick in 2022 to add to the array while taking advantage of Nagy and Pace’s desperation.
“Look I love Justin Fields, I just think Justin Fields would be perfect in the same type of scenario as Trey Lance, so to San Francisco, I think that would make more sense,” Riddick said Friday on “Get Up.”
Given the success the 49ers have had with Garoppolo in the one fully healthy season he’s given the franchise, fans should be confident that whoever lines up under center in Week 1 next fall will be in good hands with Shanahan and new offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel.