Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes will clearly be the superior quarterback entering Super Bowl LVIII in two weeks time. But Mahomes’ own former mentor doesn’t think people should take his San Francisco 49ers counterpart Brock Purdy lightly.
Former NFL quarterback Alex Smith on Sunday appeared on ESPN’s NFL Countdown and delivered a passionate defense of Purdy. Smith, who was the Chiefs’ QB1 and Mahomes’ mentor in 2017, gave a rebuttal for several criticisms hurled against Purdy, including the idea that the 24-year-old is simply a game manager.
Smith pointed to a particular play during the 49ers’ Divisional Round contest against the Green Bay Packers. The Niners trailed 21-17 and were facing 3rd-and-10 early in the 4th quarter. Instead of making a safe pass to one of his open receivers short of the sticks, Purdy threw it over the outstretched arms of Packers safety Darnell Savage Jr. to a leaping Jauan Jennings for a 21-yard gain.
“I can tell you, as the unofficial president of the Game Managers Club, he’s not allowed in,” said Smith.
Alex Smith in the midst of a passionate defense of #49ers QB Brock Purdy:
“I can tell you, as the unofficial president of the Game Managers Club, he’s not allowed in.” pic.twitter.com/nl92I7yJHZ
— Nick Wagoner (@nwagoner) January 28, 2024
Here’s Smith’s full segment on defending Purdy:
Former #49ers QB Alex Smith is a real one for his support of Brock Purdy 🤝
“As the unofficial President of the Game Manager’s Club, he’s not allowed in.”
— OurSF49ers (@OurSf49ers) January 28, 2024
Purdy has been branded as a game manager by some fans and even former NFL MVPs alike for supposedly being a mere product of 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan’s system. But Smith, who fittingly played for both the Chiefs and the 49ers during his 15-year NFL career, doesn’t believe that to be the case.
The 3-time Pro Bowler was proven right by Purdy hours later. The 49ers QB overcame a sluggish start to lead a 17-point comeback over the Detroit Lions in the NFC Championship Game. Purdy’s second half performance included some gutsy crunch time plays that helped secure the victory.
Brock Purdy keeps on doing damage with his legs!
— NFL (@NFL) January 29, 2024
Purdy went 20/31 with 1 touchdown and 1 interception in the 34-31 win at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. He also rushed for 48 yards on 5 carries. Not bad at all for a game manager.