Why Shanahan isn't worried about Purdy's decision-making

Why Shanahan isn't worried about Purdy's decision-making originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

Brock Purdy came under fire after an uncharacteristically inconsistent performance in the 49ers' 24-21 divisional-round playoff win over the Green Bay Packers last weekend at Levi's Stadium, but Kyle Shanahan isn't concerned about his 24-year-old quarterback's decision-making.

In speaking to reporters before practice on Thursday, Shanahan reaffirmed his confidence in Purdy, stating that the second-year signal-caller is as good of a decision-maker at the quarterback position as he's had during his time as a coach.

"Something I talk to every quarterback about every single day I've coached," Shanahan told reporters. "It's crazy how many questions we're getting about every one of Brock's decisions … sometimes when quarterbacks make bad decisions forcing it deep, they should check it down. Sometimes when they check it down and a guy hits the guy right away, they're like, 'Damn, I had that over the top.'

"Brock's as good as any quarterback I've had at making those decisions. It does not mean he's perfect. Try and find me that guy."

One of the highlights of the 49ers' thrilling comeback victory over the Packers was Purdy connecting with Jauan Jennings for a 21-yard gain to convert a third-and-long opportunity while San Francisco was trailing Green Bay 21-17 midway through the fourth quarter.

Shanahan revealed that while he initially believed Purdy should have looked elsewhere on that throw, ultimately, it was the right decision due to Jennings making the catch, allowing the 49ers' offense to stay on the field by extending the drive.

"That third-and-10 on the last drive, I would say it probably should have been a checkdown on that unbelievable throw he threw over, I forget who it was, and Jauan [Jennings] came over and caught it," Shanahan explained. "I thought that was a checkdown until Jauan caught it. So it's playing the game.

"Yeah, you judge everything, but you got to try to play the game; you got to try to win, and if it's automatic every time, they're deep checkdown, they're tight, throw it deep. Yeah, that's how it should work out, but you're in the pocket, and you're playing a sport. You're not reviewing it like a coach with the film after and you're not just asking questions based off of stuff. He's got to play and that's why on the last drive he did some good on that, but it just wasn't as consistent as the questions."

Purdy finished the 49ers' win over the Packers strong, going 23-for-39 with 252 passing yards, one touchdown, and an 86.7 passer rating.

That included Purdy leading a game-winning drive in the fourth quarter where the 24-year-old quarterback was 6 of 7 for 47 yards, including a crucial third-down conversion to Brandon Aiyuk while San Francisco marched downfield on a 12-play, 69-yard drive to take a 24-21 lead.

The young quarterback has recorded an impressive stat line through his first four playoff games, boasting a 101.0 passer rating with four touchdowns and zero interceptions in his postseason career.

Purdy's next playoff test is Sunday's NFC Championship Game, where the 49ers will face the Detroit Lions. The winner will represent the conference in Super Bowl LVIII.

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