After watching his San Francisco 49ers effectively put their game away against the Arizona Cardinals on Monday Night Football in Mexico before the clock hit quadruple zeros, Kyle Shanahan decided to avoid the risk of injury following the momentary loss of Dre Greenlaw and take his starters out of the game.
This decision gave Brock Purdy an opportunity to enter only his third professional game, and unfortunately, it resulted in a viral moment that he won’t be living down for quite some time.
“Handed the wrong way and ends up a yard short of the first down,” Joe Buck said. “They call him ‘Baby Bosa’ because of his thick legs. He’s only 6-foot-1.”
“Baby Bosa needs to know which way to hand off,” Troy Aikman laughed.
“He and Jordan Mason, two rookies, are like, ‘um, sorry,’” Buck responded with a laugh of his own.
Fans online reacted to Purdy’s mistake too, lambasting the miscommunication and even giving the clip the full-on meme treatment, with it suddenly applied to other scenarios. Though Purdy’s career will forever be defined by being “Mr. Irrelevant,” this mistake is now firmly another brick in his already interesting legacy.
Fortunately, after his on-field faux pas, Buck passed along some praise from Kyle Shanahan that puts a silver lining on his otherwise embarrassing mistake.
“Kyle Shanahan said I’d be excited for him to come into a game and play as any third quarterback I’ve had, which says a lot,” Buck shared.
Brock Purdy Has Already Made History as Mr. Irrelevant
Appearing in three games so far during his rookie season, Purdy has only completed 4 of his 9 passing attempts for 66 yards while running the ball 5 times for a grand total of 3 yards.
Those numbers aren’t particularly impressive they are, in fact, historic, according to Christina Kahrl of the San Francisco Chronicle. Purdy is the first Mr. Irrelevant (final pick in the annual NFL draft) in league history to attempt a pass. Still call him Mr. Irrelevant if you want, but Purdy may just go down as the most relevant Mr. Irrelevant in the history of the honor, especially if you’re a fan of the 49ers.
The 49ers QB3 Has an Interesting Upside
Heading into the 2022 NFL draft, Purdy wasn’t particularly well thought of by talent evaluators, as his draft profile by Lance Zierlein of NFL.com detailed in his overview.
Four-year starter who was never able to improve upon a stellar sophomore campaign. Purdy is a burly pocket quarterback who needs a play-action based offense where he can rely on timing over release quickness and arm strength. He can be a confident passer when he finds his rhythm, but throwing is more of a chore than a talent thanks to a labored release. Certain areas of the field will be off limits as he moves up to take on NFL coverage talent. He’s a scrappy runner but not dynamic enough to make up for his shortcomings as a passer.
Handed a “priority free agent” grade by Zierlein, Purdy came one pick away from succumbing to that fate. Still, of the teams Purdy could have landed with, San Francisco is among the best possible spots, as Shanahan runs the sort of “play-action based offense where he can rely on timing over release quickness and arm strength.” While only time will tell what the future holds for Purdy, he at least has one highlight that will live on for the foreseeable future.