Mark Schofield’s RSP Summer Scouting Series: QB Jimmy Garoppolo’s (49ers) Manipulation Skills Part II

Mark Schofield continues his RSP Summer Scouting Series with a second look at Jimmy Garoppolo’s ability to manipulate the middle of the field—a vital part of NFL quarterbacking. 


Those of us in the quarterback evaluation space talk about this a ton, but we often fall into a trap when discussing this trait. We rely on low-hanging fruit when highlighting how a quarterback uses his eyes and/or his body to get a defender out of position. You probably know the type of play I’m talking about: A free safety in the middle of the field in a single-high coverage scheme. A quarterback staring him down like a gunfighter before he draws. A vertical route along the sideline that the quarterback wants to throw.

A vertical route the free safety has almost no chance of preventing even if he has a head start.

More impressive—to me at least—is when a quarterback can move an underneath defender. When a quarterback gets a linebacker to clear out a throwing lane, and then delivers on a route behind that vacating defender, that is a true test of manipulation.

Here are three great examples of Jimmy Garoppolo doing just that:

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