Jimmy Garoppolo had the chance to prove all his doubters wrong Sunday night. With his San Francisco 49ers leading the Kansas City Chiefs 20-10 in the fourth quarter, Garoppolo could have led them to victory. Instead, he turned in a horrible performance in the final quarter as his team came up empty in the big game.
Garoppolo did an admirable job for three quarters, guiding San Francisco to a 10-point lead. Entering the final frame-- where he had been exceptional this year -- the Niners' quarterback was 17-of-20 for 183 yards, with a touchdown and an interception. Until that point, his performance was more than enough for San Francisco, whose defense was holding Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes in check. But that all came crashing down for Garoppolo in the final quarter.
Given three chances to lead a game-clinching drive, Garoppolo failed each time. San Francisco's possessions in the final quarter resulted in two punts, a turnover on downs and an interception. For the quarter, he completed just 3 of 11 passes for 36 yards, with an interception and a passer rating of just 2.8.
While Mahomes was heating up and leading three consecutive scoring drives, his counterpart was allowing himself to get shaken by Kansas City's pressure. Then when Garoppolo finally had a clean pocket and receiver Emmanuel Sanders beat his coverage, the 28-year-old quarterback overthrew him.
That's a throw you have to make if you want to win the Super Bowl. Garoppolo had a game-winning toss in his hands and he simply couldn't do it.
Garoppolo finished the game completing 20 of 31 passes for 219 yards, with a touchdown and two interceptions. He wound up with a passer rating of just 69.2 and a QBR of 40.6. He only had a worse passer rating in one game this season.
The narrative all postseason has been that Garoppolo was just a game-manager who benefited from San Francisco's outstanding defense and running game. He had a chance to dispel those notions during Super Bowl LIV. Unfortunately, he failed to do so.