Brock Purdy gets brutally honest about missed deep passes vs. Rams

The San Francisco 49ers are off to a 2-0 start in 2023 and have scored at least 30 points in each win. But there is clear room for improvement starting with quarterback Brock Purdy.

The 49ers offense will be elite regardless of who is under center thanks to the fearsome foursome of Christian McCaffrey, Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk and George Kittle. Purdy does the job fine, well enough to make San Francisco a decently formidable offense. But he has limitations that could spell doom for the team later on down the line. The biggest one is perhaps his inability to consistently make deep throws.

A collection of overthrown passes in the 49ers’ Week 2 win over the Los Angeles Rams showed why Purdy had to win the starting job this offseason. 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan rightly pointed out that they were tough throws but said that the most important thing Purdy did was protect the ball. Avoiding turnovers is inarguably good but that’s not exactly the kind of praise — essentially saying, “Yeah, he wasn’t great, but he also wasn’t terribly bad, either” — a player hears when they have high expectations.

Purdy said that his misfires were not the fault of his surgically repaired right elbow. The 49ers quarterback owned up to his mistakes and said that it’s on him to throw more accurate passes, according to Nick Wagoner of ESPN.

“Those are on me,” Purdy said, via ESPN. “I’ve got to do better. I’ve got to hit them in stride and not overthrow them. It’s as simple as that. … That’s what you’ve got to do as an NFL quarterback and I put that on myself.”

The 49ers will always be able to get by with McCaffrey’s versatility and their three-headed monster of pass-catchers. But, especially with an offensive line that isn’t considered super impressive, they will need Purdy to make the right throws more consistently. They don’t need him to be a rocket-armed gunslinger like Patrick Mahomes or Josh Allen. What they’ll need is someone who can get the stars the ball when they beat guys deep.

After a pair of road games, Brock Purdy and the 49ers will have a tune-up game of sorts at home against the New York Giants on Thursday.

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