How do I not overreact?
The San Francisco 49ers just demolished the New York Giants with their second unit, or Junior Varsity team, if you will.
The final score was 36-9 and that’s exactly what it should’ve been. Even though guys like Kendrick Bourne, Jerick McKinnon, Jordan Reed, Kerry Hyder, Jason Verrett, and why not even Nick Mullens are all labeled as backups, they would be starters on the New York Giants.
Jimmy Garoppolo is still “QB1”
I have zero doubt when I say Mullens is the best backup in the NFL especially now that Nick Foles is a starter once again and I would only give Foles the edge because he is in the same offensive system that won him a Super Bowl MVP.
Mullens showed some great agility and anticipation, and made some tight-window throws. Anything critical I say after the 343 yards and 1 touchdown is going to feel like I am playing devil’s advocate.
Here it is: Garoppolo is the more accurate passer, and that was on display when Mullens was a little behind receivers quite a bit. Had two would-be touchdowns on a tee to Brandon Aiyuk, but Mullens was a little off.
While there’s certainly no quarterback controversy, the 49ers should let Mullens cook once again and ride his hot hand against the struggling Eagles to give Garoppolo an extra week to rest his high ankle sprain.
The run game is not okay without Raheem Mostert.
The hype for Jerrick McKinnon and Jeff Wilson Jr was on display and it was certainly earned after their performance. They were fantastic in the receiving game as McKinnon posted 3-39 and Jeff Wilson put together 3-54-1.
The run blocking hasn’t been what we saw last year, but McKinnon appeared hesitant to hit the hole and accelerate through it (which is what makes Mostert so excellent). Neither McKinnon nor Wilson Jr averaged more than 2.7 yards per carry. Mostert hasn’t averaged less than 3.9 yards per carry since 2017 (his first game as a 49er) when receiving a minimum of 7 carries.
After starting 0-1 San Francisco has gone on to beat the Giants and Jets by a combined 67-22.
This team appears to have their confidence and swag back. With potentially Deebo Samuel, George Kittle and Mostert coming back soon, it wouldn’t shock me to see the same plus-45 point differential over the next two weeks with the Eagles and Dolphins on the horizon.