QB Jimmy Garoppolo
QB Jimmy Garoppolo
Press Conference – October 23, 2019
San Francisco 49ers
Did you get a chance to meet WR Emmanuel Sanders?
“Yeah, yeah. We’ve been grinding all morning. He’s picking things up quickly. It’ll be a challenge, but yeah, it’s great to have him in here.”
What are your initial impressions of Emmanuel’s game?
“He’s a playmaker. If you give him a chance on the ball, he’ll make you look good. Just getting him in space, giving him opportunities to showcase his talents. He’s fast, gets out and cuts quickly, runs good routes and so all those things. It’s exciting.”
Once you heard the news, did you immediately start looking at film on what he’s been able to do?
“Yeah, I looked up a couple highlights and everything. Got excited. It was fun hearing about that. Just meeting him briefly and getting to talk to him, he seems like a great guy.”
It looked like you guys actually met after the preseason game or something, there was a picture of that. How did that come about? What’s your history with him?
“Pretty much, we met at the practices this year. We got to talk after practice a couple times just about everything that he was going through with rehab and everything. He’s a cool, normal dude. Just down to Earth. You love to have that.”
What is the message that’s been sent to the locker room when the front office is aggressive and goes out and makes a move like this?
“It means they’re trying to make our team more competitive. Whenever you can bring in a guy of Emmanuel’s talent, it just makes everyone more competitive. I think that leads to better football.”
How do you think he’ll make you better as a quarterback?
“When you get a guy that talented, it’s just about getting the ball in his hands, letting him make plays, the yards after catch, obviously he’s tremendous at that. It’s just you want to give him opportunities. As the quarterback, it’s your job to do that.”
You talked about grinding with him. Once he came in did you guys sit down and start watching film? What was that process?
“Kind of, we’re still game planning, normal game plan like we do on Wednesdays. So, he’s trying to play a little bit of catch up, but coming from a very similar offense. It’ll take him some time, you know, for the little details and things like that, but he’s doing a great job so far.”
If he does end up playing out of the slot, how much of that position, the interplay between the quarterback and the slot receiver is chemistry and just feel between the two of those guys? Is that realistic to think that you guys could develop that in half a season?
“Yeah, it’ll be difficult. It’ll be a good challenge for us, no doubt, but I think just putting in the extra time, getting the routes and being able to talk the same language, really, and see the same defense on the field, feel space and all that stuff. It takes time, it takes reps and that’s what we’re willing to do.”
Different position, obviously, but you did a similar thing coming in the middle of the season. Will you share with him kind of the best way to approach this game plan by game plan?
“I’ll do my best to, but receiver-quarterback is a little bit different in what you have to learn, specifics and that nature. But yeah, anything I can do to help him. I’m going to put in the extra time with him, whatever it takes, really.”
Are you finding the conversations that you’re having with him are easier because he’s been in Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello’s offense and the language is similar?
“Yeah, we’ve had a couple times when I’ve been saying things and didn’t even really think about it and he’s understanding what I’m saying. That’s always a good thing when you guys can speak the same language. Like I said before, there’s little details that I’m sure will take a little time for him to catch up on.”
Head coach Kyle Shanahan just said that he thought Carolina’s defense is the best he’s seen on tape this year. What do you see from that group? What makes them so good?
“They’re very talented. Big, strong up front. They get after you with four guys. They don’t have to pressure that much. [Carolina Panthers LB Luke] Kuechly, he’s Kuechly. He is who he is and he’s tremendous in the run, pass, whatever it is. He’s just a smart player out there. In the secondary, they just get after you. They’ve got some talent back there and it’ll be a good challenge for us on Sunday.”
Sunday will be “National Tight End Day.” Do you expect a more juiced up TE George Kittle if that’s possible?
“More juiced up? That’ll be tough, but wouldn’t expect anything less from George, especially on ‘National Tight End Day.’”
Do you expect Emmanuel’s presence to free up George? I know he’s been hounded by defenses this year. Is that one byproduct?
“Yeah, it’ll be interesting to see how defenses line up, if they change anything, tilt the safeties towards him, whatever it is. Yeah, we’ll have to adjust during the game and see how that goes.”
Last week you were asked about your evolution as a quarterback and you said your knee feeling healthier and healthier has been going a long way. Is your knee 100-percent healthy and does it feel exactly back to normal?
“Yeah, I like where my knee is at. It’s in a good spot. Every week seems to get better and better and really not worrying about it is what I’m happiest about. If it’s a non-issue, then I’m alright.”
When say getting better and better, what is that like, what does that feel like in getting better? Is it trusting it more or how would you describe that process?
“Yeah, that’s a tough one. I don’t know. The flights create more swelling in it, so every flight there’s less swelling. I don’t really have any specifics on that one. It’s just little things here and there, you know?”
How much does the fact that Emmanuel’s played in a bunch of playoff games and a couple Super Bowls, does somebody who’s done those types of things have more trust from your perspective as a quarterback?
“Experience takes you a long way, so obviously that’s a great thing to have. He can share his experiences with the younger guys and what it takes and all that, but as far as the trust and things like that, I think that’s just me and him getting on the same page, putting in the time, talking the same language, like I said, and just being able to trust one another, me trust him as much as he trusts me. It works both ways.”
How did you find out about the trade?
“One of my brothers, actually, texted me. He was on it like that. Yeah, he was my update, I guess.”