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Garoppolo Shines in Debut as Patriots Starter; Patriots down Cardinals 23-21

September 12, 2016 - Author: John-Mark and Chuck Mallory

Jimmy Garoppolo was stellar in his first game filling in for suspended New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, completing 24-33 passes for 264 yards and one touchdown. The Patriots and the Arizona Cardinals went back and forth all game, but Garoppolo was able to drive the team down the field late in the 4th quarter before kicker Stephen Gostkowski came in to kick what would be the game-winning field goal. From there, the Patriots defense forced the Cardinals to attempt a long field goal, which was missed. Garoppolo then took a knee to run out the clock and seal the victory.

The game went in Arizona’s favor early, as a sack of Garoppolo forced him to fumble. Arizona’s Chandler Jones recovered the fumble, which led to a Cardinals touchdown. Despite the early setback, Garoppolo was able to bounce back and make great plays for the Patriots all over the field. While the Patriots are generally known for having a deep passing game when Brady is under center, it would appear that Head Coach Bill Belichick adjusted the gameplan for Garoppolo. Many of the Patriots’ offensive drives included more running plays than passing plays, and when Garoppolo did pass he threw short or mid-range strikes. Despite this, the Patriots still moved the ball very efficiently. Garoppolo’s biggest strength in this game was his effectiveness on 3rd down. Garoppolo completed 8 of 10 3rd down throws and converted seven of those throws for first downs. Arizona has a lot of weapons on offense, including future Hall of Fame wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, and a key part of the gameplan with Garoppolo was to keep the Patriots offense on the field so Arizona’s offense would have fewer chances to score. Despite Fitzgerald’s 2 touchdown catches and a late push by the Cardinals’ offense down the field, the Patriots were able to hang on and get the victory.

The spotlight was squarely on Garoppolo after the game, but instead of basking in it Garoppolo was quick to give most of the credit to his teammates and coaches. It is clear that Garoppolo isn’t going to be a cocky kind of guy when leading this Patriots team.

“Whoever’s out there on the field, we have a lot of confidence in one another, and that means a lot to us,” Garoppolo said. “The coaching staff did a great job simplifying plays for us on third down. It makes things a lot easier for all of us when you have coaching like that.”

While many experts didn’t pick the Patriots to win this game, it seems as if there might be more believers in Garoppolo than there were before the opening kickoff. There will now be even more scrutiny on Garoppolo when the Patriots face off against the Miami Dolphins next week in Massachusetts. While he won’t have as tough of an opponent as Arizona’s defense was, there will be increased pressure for Garoppolo to build on his success from this game. Many people were unsure of Garoppolo’s skill level coming into the season since he hadn’t played much time in meaningful games. As of the time this article was published, Jimmy Garoppolo is trending on Twitter. It just goes to show how much it means to be a starting quarterback in the NFL. If Garoppolo keeps playing this well in the team’s next three games, there may be other NFL teams that try to trade for Garoppolo to make him their starter. Anything is possible, but for now it’s really cool to see a kid like Garoppolo get to live his dream.

Jimmy Garoppolo and the Patriots will look to add to their momentum coming off Sunday night’s huge win when they battle the Dolphins next week in the Patriots’ home opener at Gillette Stadium. The Game starts at 1 pm EST on Sunday, September 18th. Be sure to keep checking jimmygaroppolo.net for more news and updates on the up and coming QB.

Comments are closed - Categories: Games

Jimmy Garoppolo Will Start Patriots’ First Four Games After Brady Suspension Upheld

August 1, 2016 - Author: John-Mark and Chuck Mallory

The New England Patriots’ have announced that Jimmy Garoppolo will be the team’s starting quarterback for the first four games of the upcoming NFL season after Tom Brady’s four-game suspension regarding the “Deflategate” scandal was reinstated by The US Second Court of Appeals at the end of April. Although some thought Brady may appeal the decision further up to the US Supreme Court, he made a statement shortly after the ruling saying that he would not fight the suspension any longer.

“It has been a challenging 18 months and I have made the difficult decision to no longer proceed with the legal process,” Brady said in a statement. “I’m going to work hard to be the best player I can be for the New England Patriots and I look forward to having the opportunity to return to the field this fall.”

This decision clears the way for Garoppolo to be an NFL starting quarterback for the Patriots’ first four games of this season, and marks the quarterback’s first true test of whether or not he has the talents to be a starting quarterback in this league. While seeing glimpses of Garoppolo’s success in garbage time or in preseason games, fans have often wondered how Garoppolo would stack up if he had Brady’s job. Well, now those fans will get their chance to find out.

Garoppolo hasn’t had much experience in the NFL. He’s thrown just 31 passes in two seasons as the Patriots’ backup quarterback. But in the limited time he’s been on the field, Garoppolo has shown he can have an impact running with the ball or throwing downfield. This adds a new element to the quarterback position that the Patriots could toy with in the first four games of the season, as Brady isn’t considered a running quarterback. Garoppolo has received a lot of attention in the past few weeks since it was clear he’d be the starter for part of this season. His former coach at Eastern Illinois University, Dino Babers, had high praise for his former QB.

“Jimmy Garoppolo was the William Tell, to me, of college football,” Babers said in an interview with ESPN. “I’ve never seen a quarterback that could hit exactly what he was throwing at. I’m not talking about putting it on a guy’s body, you put your hand out there and he’s sticking the ball right in the middle of your palm…I’m just telling you, this young man is exceptional. If Bill Belichick put a second-round draft pick on him, he knows what he’s doing.”

Indeed, the Patriots’ coaching staff has been asked a lot about Garoppolo since he was named the apparent starter for these first four games. These games against the Arizona Cardinals, Miami Dolphins, Houston Texans, and Buffalo Bills, respectively, will not be easy (no NFL game is). However, it is clear that the coaching staff of the Patriots are confident in Garoppolo’s abilities, and won’t be changing much in the way of how the team practices or prepares.

“This is really the time of the year where we really try to provide everyone with their foundation for the whole year, so our philosophy really is going to remain unchanged for a while here, in terms of repetitions,” Patriots Offensive Coordinator Josh McDaniels said. “We usually split them up pretty evenly. We don’t really put anybody in first and second groups, or third groups, at this point.”

Even opposing coaches have been singing the praises of Garoppolo. Here’s the Head Coach of the New York Jets, the Patriots’ division rival, on Garoppolo and the team:

“Garoppolo can play,” Todd Bowles told the New York Daily News. “They don’t worry about who they have. They just have a system in place and they go play football. I think people underestimate that. You still have to knock off the champs. It’s theirs until somebody takes it from them.”

It seems as if there are high expectations on Garoppolo, but based on how much talent he’s shown and how his peers in the NFL view him, it seems likely that the young QB could live up to them. Garoppolo has a chance to prove he is a starting-caliber NFL quarterback, which may even land him an opportunity to start on a team other than New England in the future. All that Garoppolo has to focus on now is the start of the season and getting ready to play in a role that he hasn’t held since college. The Patriots’ regular season starts on Sunday, September 11th when the Patriots visit Arizona to face the Cardinals. It’s an exciting time to be a fan of the Patriots and Garoppolo, so keep checking jimmygaroppolo.net for more news and updates!

Comments are closed - Categories: Games, Team News

Patriots, Garoppolo win Super Bowl XLIX

February 2, 2015 - Author: John-Mark and Chuck Mallory

jimmy super bowl

 

The New England Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 in Super bowl XLIX Sunday night in Arizona, becoming world champions in thrilling fashion. The game was back and forth the entire night, with the Patriots taking a four point lead with about five minutes left in the game. The Seahawks looked like they were about to pull off another miracle after a crazy sideline catch by wide receiver Jermaine Kearse that bounced off Patriots’ defender Malcolm Butler and into the arms of Kearse as he laid prone on the Patriots’ 5 yard line. However, Butler would immediately make up for his mistake after the Seahawks decided to not to run the ball one yard from the end zone and quarterback Russell Wilson threw an interception to Butler to seal the game.

For veteran quarterback Tom Brady, this is his fourth Super Bowl championship and this win puts him in the conversation as the greatest quarterback ever. For Jimmy Garoppolo, he wins a championship in his first year as a backup quarterback for the Patriots. While Garoppolo didn’t see a lot of action on the field this year, he’s had a chance to learn from possibly the best quarterback/coach tandem in the history of football, and he knows how valuable studying under Brady can be.

It’s definitely a positive to be able to sit behind a guy like Tom,” Garoppolo said. “I’m happy where I ended up. On the field and off the field, [he’s] helping me with things.”

jimmy g super bowl kiss

While it may not seem like Garoppolo had much of a factor in the Super Bowl victory since he didn’t see the field, it’s clear from listening to the Patriots’ coaches and players that he was a bigger factor than some may give him credit for. Leading up to the big game, Garoppolo was part of the scout offense (a team of backups that helps the starting defense practice) and spent most of the week mimicking Russell Wilson in order to prepare Patriots defenders for the Super Bowl. Garoppolo even mimicked the formation and final play that the Seahawks ran that led to Butler’s interception.

“When we play quarterbacks like we’re going to see [in Russell Wilson] that’s a huge role for us,” defensive coordinator Matt Patricia said. “This is definitely a kind of unsung hero job.”

“He’s given us a great look, whether he’s dropping back and trying to make a play, whether it’s being zone read and running,” said safety Devin McCourty. “Obviously, we’re not going to get Russell Wilson in practice but we got a good showing of what we could see in the Super Bowl.”

And here’s Garoppolo talking about mimicking the final play of the game, and how Patriots’ wide receiver Josh Boyce previously beat Butler on the play:

“We did and Josh got a touchdown in practice on it,” Garoppolo said after the Super Bowl. “It got [Butler] ready and he knew what to expect. Jumping the route like that, that’s very impressive. That’s all instincts.”

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It’s been quite the year for Jimmy Garoppolo, who went from 2nd round draft pick who was unsure of his place on the Patriots to a backup quarterback for a legend and a Super Bowl Champion. This is just the beginning for Garoppolo, who has a lot more ahead in his career as an NFL quarterback. Keep checking jimmygaroppolo.net for off-season updates and news! Congratulations to the World Champion New England Patriots!

Comments are closed - Categories: Games

Garoppolo Plays 2nd Half in Patriots Loss, Plus Season Wrapup

December 31, 2014 - Author: John-Mark and Chuck Mallory

Jimmy Garoppolo finally saw some extended regular season game action during the New England Patriots’ 17-9 loss to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. The week 17 matchup was filled with backups for the Patriots, as the team had already clinched home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs. Still, it was a good opportunity for Garoppolo and others to show what they could do.

Garoppolo entered the game at the start of the 3rd quarter while starting quarterback Tom Brady played the first half. Garoppolo made some good plays, including a 24-yard strong pass to wide receiver Brandon LaFell that led to a Patriots’ field goal. But Garoppolo struggled in other ways, sometimes trying to run with the ball when there was nothing there. He failed to get a first down on a designed quarterback run that was called on 4th down and 1 deep in Bills territory. While Garoppolo didn’t exactly take over the game, he still showed a lot of promise throughout the year and in this contest.

garoppolo run

 

“It was a good experience,” Garoppolo said. “Getting out there and actually getting some live reps will only help going forward. There’s plenty of room for improvement. There are some good things, bad things and things to learn from.”

Like most of the season, Garoppolo wasn’t told what his role in the Patriots’ last game of the season would be. He didn’t know leading up to the game if he would be starting, or playing very little at all. Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick believes that this allows his backup players to prepare better for any situation. Still, the legendary coach had high praise for Garoppolo.

“I thought Jimmy competed well,” Belichick said. “He was under some pressure. Some things were good, other things could have been better, but I thought he competed well. Some of the opportunities where he had to make plays, he made them. There are definitely some positives out there. There are also things to learn from and build on.”

Even though Garoppolo saw little in-game action this year, he continued to improve and the other players on the team also took note of that. It’s clear that Garoppolo earned the respect of many of his teammates with his performance this season, and especially in this game.

“You always like to see a young guy get in there and get himself an opportunity, and there’s one thing about Jimmy, he’s a competitor and he loves the game of football and was able to get out there and make some plays with his feet,” Patriots wide receiver Matthew Slater said. “You always want to see your teammates do well, especially a guy that has worked hard in the role he’s been asked to perform in. It’s not the easiest of roles, and for him to take advantage, we’re pumped for him.”

garoppolo sack

Going forward, the Patriots are the favorite to appear in the Super Bowl representing the AFC. Ever since the team’s week 4 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs where Brady was benched in favor of Garoppolo, Brady has played like he has something to prove. The offense has improved dramatically and it looks as if the Patriots will be a tough opponent for any team in the playoffs seeing as they have home-field advantage throughout. As Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount said: “Nobody can stop us but us.”

 

Season Wrapup

Jimmy Garoppolo achieved a lot this season as a rookie backup quarterback for one of the NFL’s most successful franchises. He became the only quarterback on the Patriots’ roster besides future Hall of Famer Tom Brady, which is a huge job to give a rookie 2nd-round draft pick. He was entrusted to this role by head coach Bill Belichick, who is often considered as one of the league’s toughest (and also best) coaches. While some young rookies may have grown frustrated with the lack of playing time, Garoppolo took it as a great opportunity to learn from one of the best quarterbacks of this generation, and it will surely benefit his career in the future.

garoppolo eastern

Garoppolo surprised both his peers and fans alike in the preseason, outperforming quarterback Ryan Mallett, who many expected to end up as Brady’s backup for the season. Garoppolo showed great poise for a rookie, and it was clear the Patriots had confidence in him because they traded Mallett away in the preseason, leaving Garoppolo as the sole backup quarterback. Garoppolo seems to be in the Patriots’ long term plans, even if he has to wait a few season behind Brady.

Week 4 of the NFL season was when Garoppolo saw his first in-game action of the regular season. During a 41-14 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, Garoppolo was inserted into the game in the 4th quarter and promptly lead the team to a touchdown, causing some controversy when Brady didn’t celebrate with him on the sideline afterwards. Belichick was even asked after the game about “evaluating” the quarterback position, but he laughed it off. The game seemed to be motivation for Brady, who went on one of the best stretches of his career after that, leading the Patriots to seven straight wins and setting the tone for the rest of the season in which they were the best team in the NFL.

While Garoppolo didn’t see major playing time again until week 17, it remains clear that he is focused on his future as a Patriot, and also is willing to work hard to get better. Throughout the season, he has said all the right things to the media, and remained humble and patient about his backup role. While he won’t likely see any playing time in the playoffs, such is life in the NFL where Garoppolo is one injury away from being the starting quarterback for this team. Obviously Patriots fans don’t want to see that quite yet, but if Garoppolo is called upon, there’s no doubt in my mind that he’ll be ready.

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It’s been a great year for the Patriots and Garoppolo. He went from a 2nd round pick from Eastern Illinois University that no one was really sure of to the backup quarterback to a living legend that he can learn from everyday. Although Garoppolo fans may have to wait a little while longer to see him become a starting NFL quarterback, you can rest assured that the knowledge he’s getting now will be amazingly beneficial in the future. Although this season may be wrapping up, Garoppolo’s future is bight and we hope you’ll keep checking here at jimmygaroppolo.net for more news and info as it happens.

Comments are closed - Categories: Games

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