The San Francisco 49ers put an end to the Dallas Cowboys season with a stunning victory at AT&T Stadium on Super Wild Card Weekend. Jimmy Garoppolo did just enough, and Deebo Samuel again flashed his explosiveness as the 49ers defense held the Dak Prescott and the Cowboys in check for most of the game.
Next up for San Francisco are Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. But, this could be problematic for the 49ers — especially if the game is close in the final quarter.
Jimmy Garoppolo has not played well in the fourth quarter in the playoffs
Garoppolo has not performed well in crunch time in the playoffs. In his four starts, he has yet to throw a touchdown in that final quarter.
Now, these stats are a bit misleading in a way. In the 49ers 2020 run to the Super Bowl, Garoppolo started every game along the way.
The first one was a 27-10 victory over the Minnesota Vikings, and he didn’t need to throw a ton in the final quarter. Then the NFC title game was a 37-20 victory over — you guessed it — the Packers.
Garoppolo went just 6-8 for 77 yards and no scores in that victory, thanks to Raheem Mostert rushing for 220 yards and four scores.
Mostert’s big day allowed Garoppolo to take a back seat. Perhaps the 49ers draw up a similar game plan, especially with the recent play of Samuel and Elijah Mitchell.
However, Garoppolo’s play in the final quarter against the Cowboys wasn’t the most encouraging, either.
The 49ers struggled in the fourth quarter and almost coughed up the game against the Cowboys
Nick Wright has a point here. Others also noticed Garoppolo’s poor play down the stretch.
The 49ers entered the final quarter with a 23-7 lead and the game looking like a blowout. But, things unraveled a bit from there.
San Francisco failed to score in the final frame, and Garoppolo threw an ugly interception that ignited a Cowboys comeback.
That pass was not close, and the Cowboys went on to score a touchdown on that drive to make it a one-score game. If it weren’t for an epic Cowboys miscue in the closing seconds, this interception could’ve easily cost the 49ers the game.
The 49ers moved on, but Garoppolo went 16-25 for 172 yards and no scores. Will that be enough to get by the Packers?
Probably not, especially with the improved Green Bay defense.
Throw recent history out the window — the Packers are red-hot
Mostert single-handedly sent the 49ers to the Super Bowl the last time these teams went. However, this time around is much different for both teams.
Rodgers is on a mission to get to the Super Bowl after losing to Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFC title game last postseason. Davante Adams is still a headache to deal with, and Green Bay is the top seed in the NFC for a reason and should be getting players back.
The 49ers offense will likely need to score a ton of points to keep pace with Rodgers and the Packers unless the San Francisco defense can frustrate the opposing offense.
It won’t be easy, regardless of what recent history says.
If Garoppolo and the 49ers are in a close game in the fourth quarter, the stats do not bode well for their shot of an upset at Lambeau Field.
Stats Courtesy of Pro Football Reference