What 49ers QB Purdy learned from Garoppolo in 2022 season

What 49ers QB Purdy learned from Garoppolo in 2022 season originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

Brock Purdy and Jimmy Garoppolo spent a few minutes catching up after the first 49ers-Las Vegas Raiders joint practice Thursday in Henderson, Nev., and a short time later, the young San Francisco quarterback expressed his appreciation for his former teammate.

"At our lockers and stuff we would just talk about life and things that he's been through with football and myself," Purdy told reporters after Thursday's practice. "And then obviously, the biggest thing for me was sort of observing. Obviously at practice, yes, but like even in the locker room, how he's talking to guys and interacting with guys in the locker room.

"So, whether he knows that or not, I learned a lot from him and I'm very appreciative of that. But yeah, I think our relationship's great. We never really had much time to go out outside of football and hang out or anything like that, but we do have a good relationship and can talk and catch up on a lot of good things."

Purdy began the 2022 NFL season as the 49ers' third-string quarterback behind starter Trey Lance and Garoppolo, who served as the backup.

But Lance and Garoppolo both suffered season-ending injuries, thrusting Purdy into a position he likely didn't expect when the 49ers used the 2022 NFL Draft's final pick on him.

Purdy took over as starter in Week 13 and didn't look like a rookie, and while that had a lot to do with 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan, how Garoppolo carried himself rubbed off on the rookie quarterback.

"Jimmy did a great job with going through progressions and just the timing and the operation and stuff," Purdy said. "And so, I learned from him and when I was the one to go in, I was just trying to do what coach taught us and try to not be late to any reads or progressions or anything like that.

"So, I think we are a little bit different, but at the same time, you get into an offense, you’ve just got to do what the coach and be successful in that regard. So, I think we both have done that."

Garoppolo was there every step of the way as Purdy led the 49ers all the way to the NFC Championship Game before he sustained a significant injury of his own, which required offseason elbow surgery.

They now are opponents, with Purdy entrenched as the 49ers' QB1 and Garoppolo starting for the Raiders. But that hasn't put a strain on their relationship.

"It was good to see old Jim," Purdy said. "He is doing good. He looks healthy and good and just talking about how everything is here and how he loves it and how we miss him and it's always good seeing Jimmy, so it's great."

Purdy's comments were relayed to Garoppolo a short time later when he met with reporters Thursday.

“That’s cool to hear," Garoppolo said (h/t The Athletic's Tashan Reed). "That’s one thing I always take pride in. How the guys see you, how you interact with them. You don’t want to be that one quarterback that’s separated from the whole team and doing your own thing. I’ve always wanted to be one of the guys. That’s kind of how I go about my business.”

RELATED: Lance looks crisp in practice vs. Raiders

Garoppolo likely wasn't expecting to become Purdy's first NFL mentor, but that's how things played out, and it's clear the two will remain close as their careers progress.

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