QB Jimmy Garoppolo Press Conference

QB Jimmy Garoppolo

Press Conference – November 24, 2021

San Francisco 49ers

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What’s your favorite Thanksgiving dish?

“That’s a good one to start with. I’m a stuffing guy, personally, stuffing, cranberry sauce. Those are two good go-tos.”

Can I do a Thanksgiving follow-up? What are your favorite traditions and do you do any black Friday, holiday shopping, cyber Monday stuff?

“Not really. I’m not much of a shopper, during the season’s tough. But yeah, I’ll get online a little bit, maybe. Tradition-wise, not really, just kind of go over to one of the guy’s houses. I’m having my family over this time for Thanksgiving, so, yeah a nice little setup.”

You’ve faced the Vikings a couple of times. What kind of challenges does their defense present?

“Well, they don’t give you anything easy. That’s where it starts. Their linebackers are really talented, kind of play high to low on things, a challenge in the pass game with some of the two-high stuff, try to take away the play pass and things like that. And it makes it tough on us.”

What does it mean when the linebackers play high to low?

“Similar to our linebackers, actually. They’d rather play the 10-yard route than the five-yard route and make you just check it down and march down the field.”

 Obviously every game is important, but when you play a game like this, NFC opponent, both kind of right in the playoff mix, how much awareness is there in a locker room of what this could mean down the line?

“I think guys have had that awareness the last couple of weeks, honestly. Our backs were kind of up against the wall and we’ve kind of responded pretty well these last couple of weeks. So I think guys have that in their mind already. We’ve just got to keep riding this momentum we’ve got right now.”

How much fun has it been to see WR Deebo Samuel play wide receiver and running back for your offense?

“I enjoy it. Moving him around, we had a couple formations with guys in different places last week. It just makes it tough on defenses to communicate, especially if they’re in man and some of those situations could get hard on them. So it’s been awesome. He embraces it. Not many receivers would want to be getting handoffs between the tackles, but he embraces that stuff.”

The last time you guys played at home you won. I’m sure you probably could have done without the wave while you guys were on offense.

“I did notice that.”

 Just the atmosphere, you know, the game in primetime, now kind of a playoff-type of game. What do you need from fans or what do you guys get from playing in front of them?

“Well, the fans show up every Sunday, they really do. No matter what the circumstances and you’ve got to appreciate them for that. Just you know, be loud on third down, get out there early for us, from the kickoff starting and just be ready to roll. It’s going to be an electric atmosphere. They’re a good team. They’re hot right now. So we know what we’re in for.”

It seems like WR Brandon Aiyuk has really played well the last couple of weeks, which maybe allows you to use Deebo at running back a little bit more. How important has Aiyuk’s ascension been in the last couple of weeks?

“Really important for himself, for our team, everything. He’s made some big strides. And I know everyone’s been talking about it and everything, but you’ve got to give the guy credit when credit is due.”

Do you think, well, head coach Kyle Shanahan said after they made the trade in March that if you stayed healthy and played well that would be a great problem for the 49ers. They have a decision for 2022. See where this is headed? Do you think it’s a possibility you could still be here next year?

“I mean, honestly with the possibilities, I try not to close any doors too early. I don’t know. It’s one of those situations you’ve got to let it play out. We’ve got a lot going on with the season and everything right now. If you start thinking about those other things, you just get distracted, I think, but when we cross that bridge we’ll assess everything then.”

With the ways you guys have played the last two weeks and really dominated and in the locker room, was there any chatter about being flexed out of that Seattle game and taking that game out of primetime?

“Not really. I mean, I heard about it. Really doesn’t matter when or where we play, just get us on a football field.”

You’ve had WR Jauan Jennings out there the last couple of games. What does he bring to the offense and the team with his, I guess, style of play and also his bubbly personality?

“Yeah, it’s a good mixture because he is having a good time out there, but he is locked in at the same time. I mean, you saw it in the Jacksonville game when he got into that little scuffle with the guy, he kept his cool, I was right next to him and he was smiling, laughing it off. And it’s tough for a guy to do that in that situation, but for a young guy, it’s pretty impressive. I picked up his helmet for him.”

You guys have had back-to-back games with 40-or-more rushes. Do you think that’s sustainable? Is that the kind of the formula for you guys to get the win?

“I mean it’s any football team that rushes for 40 times I think you’re going to have a good day offensively. But yeah we’ve done it in the past. It’s worked for us well. Our offense seems to adapt to week-to-week and whatever the defense is giving us, we try to take advantage of that.”

What kind of advantage can you guys get with them having to shuffle their defensive line personnel so much in the last two days?

“Yeah, it’s a big advantage for us. I think, you know, the guys stepping in there are no slouches either. So we’ve got to be ready for that. But yeah, that’s just the NFL. It’s that time of year, everyone’s dealing with something and next man up mindset.”

The first series you had against the Jags, a 20-play drive, and the second and one, I think it was your bad throw to RB Jeff Wilson Jr. Sorry to bring this up, but the point is I think every skill position player there on the field was in a different position. Deebo was a running back, TE George Kittle was a fullback. Kyle said that was because they were in man coverage. Can you explain why that puts a defense in a bind when you have a fullback lined up at wide receiver when they’re in man?

“Well, we were going quick too. So I mean the rush up to the line of scrimmage, our guys were set immediately. It’s just hard for defenders to find their guys. I mean, the corner is used to the receiver being right here and now all of a sudden he’s lined up at fullback. I mean, it’s tough and it happened so quick that defenses, like the one to Jeff, it wasn’t even designed for Jeff, but I saw him flash out of the corner of my eye and try to make a play on it, missed it. It’s just with those plays, you’ve got to be ready for anything because they can mess it up or they could play it perfectly too.”