Making A Case for 49ers to Sign QB Gardner Minshew

jaguars qb Gardner Minshew

Getty Gardner Minshew #15 of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Once the Jacksonville Jaguars draft Trevor Lawrence at No.1 overall in this year’s draft, Gardner Minshew is out of a job.

Meanwhile, the 49ers keep saying Jimmy Garoppolo is their starting quarterback for next season but the entire offseason they’ve been trying to acquire other quarterbacks, with the most recent being Teddy Bridgewater and Deshaun Watson. They also inquired about Matthew Stafford before he got traded to the Rams on a surprisingly huge deal.

Niners’ beat writer Matt Barr doesn’t see why Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch haven’t tried for Minshew yet who is a lot cheaper than who’ve they’ve been going after.

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Lynch said last week that the Niners need better options are quarterback behind Jimmy Garoppolo. They recently signed Josh Rosen to a deal but that doesn’t necessarily promise him a spot on the active roster. Minshew is a lot better than Rose.

 Minshew Is Better Than Rosen

Minshew, 25, has done a lot more in the league than Rosen has so far.

Minshew started two seasons for Jacksonville and despite the Jags’ awful performance in 2020, his QB rating jumped from 91 in 2019 to 95 this past season.

Meanwhile, Rosen has QB ratings of 66 in 2018 and 52 in 2019. In his rookie year after being drafted 10th overall by Arizona, Rosen finished with 2,278 passing yards, 11 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions as the Cardinals finished 3–13 and 3–10 with Rosen as their starter. The following season Arizona drafted Kyler Murray and he was traded to the Dolphins where helped stepped in as a starter for Ryan Fitzpatrick three times but threw just one touchdown. The Miami drafted Tua Tagovalia and Rosen was left in the dust once again.

With the lack of talent and coaching over in Jacksonville, Minshew would have the opportunity to thrive under Kyle Shanahan’s scheme and offensive weapons. The best part is he’s worth pennies, so with a tight salary cap this year, the Niners wouldn’t be giving up an arm and a leg for him as they would have Stafford or even Bridgewater. The Niners would likely just have to give up a fifth or fourth-round pick for him, which might be worth it.

Here’s a glimpse of Minshew in Jacksonville’s first game last year against Indy. Jags won 27-20.

Minshew Is More Durable Than Jimmy G.

Garoppolo, who will turn 30 next season has struggled to stay healthy over his four years in the Bay Area, missing a total of 33 games.

When Jimmy Garopporol is on the gridiron, the Niners’ winning percentage jumps to 73.3. And without him, the 49ers hold 6-24 record. While winning is everything, being healthy and in the lineup is more than everything.

And that’s where the problem lies with Jimmy G. He suffered two high-ankle sprains suffered in 2020 which limited him to just six games last year leaving him useless to the team.

Here’s Jimmy’s injury track record.

As for Minshew, he’s stayed fairly healthy. He had a bothersome thumb injury that he played through last year until finally telling the coach it hurt, but nothing too crazy. It’s also notable that through his rookie season and 2020, Minshew kept his interceptions to a minimum and has been accurate enough, completing 62.9% of his throws thus far. This low-risk signing could end up being a high reward for the Niners in the end. Why not, San Francisco?

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