Brock Purdy’s Biggest Challenge Yet: The Philadelphia Eagles Defense on the road
Brock Purdy and the San Francisco 49ers successfully defended their home turn last weekend, beating the Dallas Cowboys 19-12 to book a date to South Philly for the NFC Championship Game against Jalen Hurts and the Philadelphia Eagles.
After first beating the Seattle Seahawks in the wild-card round and then eliminating Dallas, Purdy became only the third rookie quarterback since 1970 to win two playoff games. The only other quarterbacks to do so in their first season are Joe Flacco and Mark Sanchez.
While all that is certainly impressive, his biggest challenge yet will come tomorrow on the road against the Philadelphia Eagles.
The San Francisco 49ers No. 1 defense will look to slow down the Philadelphia Eagles’ No. 2 offense. As for Brock Purdy, he will have to deal with a hostile environment on the road in the biggest game of his life and will need to play well above what he’s capable of if he plans on pulling off the impossible and punching a ticket to Arizona for the Super Bowl.
The national media is absolutely obsessed with Brock Purdy and we have seen time and time again leading up to Sunday, members of the media make outlandish takes about the rookie quarterback, while discrediting and at times, diminishing what Jalen Hurts has been able to accomplish here in Philadelphia.
A perfect example of that was Craig Carton of The Carton Show putting Brock Purdy above Jalen Hurts in his top 4-remaining QBs this postseason. The desperation is embarrassing from these television shows that feel endless at this point. By endless, I mean there are countless sports talk shows that I’ve never even heard of.
It’s almost funny at this point, but no one else describes Brock Purdy and the remaining playoff quarterbacks better than Colin Cowherd. Trust me, I was just as shocked as you are before I watched the video below.
Colin Cowherd on Brock Purdy facing in the Philadelphia Eagles
“The story to the reality is going to switch.”
Originally tweeted by Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) on January 23, 2023.
My favorite part about that clip is Colin backhanding Carton’s awful take on the QBs left in the playoffs. Colin wasted no time getting that out of the way before he went in depth about why Purdy will be severely tested this Sunday.
“We got four quarterbacks left. Three are really special. And then there’s Brock Purdy.” Colin Cowherd – The Herd
I am not here to completely shit on Brock Purdy. I do think there’s a lot to like about his game. The kid has a lot of excellent intangibles and has been playing exceptional football for a rookie. Purdy has thrown 16 touchdowns to only four interceptions in his seven starts, completed 66% of his passes, and his 108.0 passer rating is the best in the NFL.
However, as Cowherd highlighted, the best quarterback Purdy has faced is Dak Prescott, who led the NFL in interceptions this season. Not to mention Purdy has never played in an environment like Philadelphia, coupled with the stout and talented defense the Eagles possess.
The Philadelphia Eagles defense ranks in the Top 5 of every major category, and when Cowherd explains that Purdy will have to play well-above what he’s capable of doing to win tomorrow, nothing captures that meaning then this video I stumbled across on Twitter, showing clips of every “interceptable” pass that Purdy has thrown.
All the pressure in the world will be on Brock Purdy this Sunday. To beat the Philadelphia Eagles, he will need to play above himself, which is an interesting dynamic because he has been an excellent decision-maker who has kept himself out of harm’s way.
You saw signs of Purdy struggling to make plays outside of the Kyle Shanahan system for large stretches of that playoff game against the Cowboys. Yet, he had the home crowd and a scary defense to help lead the 49ers to victory.
This time around, he will be facing arguably the league’s best secondary and pass rush on the road.
Mandatory Credit: The Herd