Devin McCourty praises Jimmy Garoppolo's poise ahead of Patriots-49ers showdown

Nick Goss
·3 min read

Devin McCourty praises Jimmy Garoppolo's poise ahead of Patriots-49ers game originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

Jimmy Garoppolo does a great job not getting too high or too low on the football field. He just remains calm and wins games -- a lot of them.

The San Francisco 49ers quarterback has an impressive 25-8 record (including the playoffs) as a starter in his NFL career. He's 23-7 in the regular season, including a 2-2 mark so far in 2020.

Next up for Garoppolo is a Week 7 matchup against his former team, the New England Patriots. It will be Garoppolo's first game against the Patriots and his first at Gillette Stadium since New England traded him to the 49ers during the 2017 season.

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The Patriots know Garoppolo well given his three-plus seasons in Foxboro. One of his former teammates is Patriots safety Devin McCourty, who remains impressed with Garoppolo's poise and the way he leads the 49ers offense.

"One of the biggest things I got to see here was his poise," McCourty said Wednesday during a video press conference. "You can tell -- when you've got a young guy in there filling in for Tom Brady who's on a four-game suspension and (Garoppolo) comes in and we're in Arizona Week 1, and he doesn't really blink. He's just out there playing. I think when you watch him, that doesn't change.

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"When you watch the Miami game and it wasn't going exactly how he wanted, he just doesn't change his demeanor, He just kind of stays the same way, and I think the team resembles that. They're always ready to go, they're always locked in no matter the situation. I would say Jimmy is the head of that because he doesn't really budge.

"I wouldn't say that's new because I felt that way when he was a young guy here. I still remember going into that opening weekend (in 2016) and everyone asking us questions about how nervous we were about that spot. Our whole team was saying we weren't nervous at all because we believed in Jimmy and knew he would be ready to go. I think he's shown and executed that same way in San Francisco, and that's why so many guys believe in him. He started that off when he first got there, his first couple games when he led them to victory. He's continued to do that at a high level."

Garoppolo has had an up-and-down 2020 season for the 49ers. He's completing 63.6 percent of his passes for just 735 yards with seven touchdowns and two interceptions.

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However, the 28-year-old quarterback should enter this game versus the Patriots with plenty of confidence after a strong performance in Week 6. Garoppolo threw for 266 yards with three touchdowns and zero interceptions in a 24-16 win over a good Los Angeles Rams team on Sunday night.

The Patriots are a tough team to throw against, though. New England's secondary is very good and loaded with quality cornerbacks, most notably Jonathan Jones, Jason McCourty, J.C. Jackson and reigning Defensive Player of the Year winner Stephon Gilmore.

If Garoppolo is able to beat the Patriots and play at a high level against New England's top-tier pass defense, it could be a real turning point in the 49ers season.