Fantasy Football Instant Reaction: Jimmy Garoppolo's injury costly for 49ers
Heath Cummings takes a look at what the 49ers offense might look like without Jimmy Garoppolo
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The 49ers lost a football game on Sunday, but initial reports suggest they may have lost much more than that.
Jimmy Garoppolo was injured on a fourth-quarter scramble, and Kyle Shanahan's press conference and Ian Rapoport's tweet suggest it may have been a season-ending injury. This is obviously devastating for Garoppolo and the 49ers.
It will also be devastating for the prospects of their pass catchers.
The team's backup quarterback is C.J. Beathard, who played in six games for the team in 2017. Beathard completed 54 percent of his passes and averaged 6.4 yards per attempt in those six games, and threw more interceptions (six) than he did touchdowns (four). This is obviously not what we were hoping for from the 49ers' signal-caller.
Marquise Goodwin led the team in receiving in those six games, with 328 yards, but only caught 40 percent of his targets and scored just one touchdown. Trent Taylor and Pierre Garcon were both more efficient in the passing game than Goodwin, but both averaged about 10 yards per reception and neither scored a touchdown. There's no reason to hold on to any receiver on the 49ers unless it's a deeper league and you value Goodwin as a boom-or-bust flex.
The running backs are a more complex question. In theory, it's going to be more difficult to find running room with Beathard under center. Carlos Hyde averaged just 3.6 yards per carry in the six games Beathard started last year. But the bright side, if there is one, is he loved dumping the ball off. Hyde averaged more than eight targets per game from Beathard. In theory, that should make Matt Breida more valuable than Alfred Morris moving forward since he's the better pass-catcher.
As for George Kittle, it's best to take a wait-and-see approach. Kittle didn't have much success with Beathard last year, but that's largely because he was splitting work with Garrett Celek almost 50/50. As bad as the tight end position is, I'd hate to drop a player as talented player as Kittle until we see more evidence.
If you're someone who owns Garoppolo, the obvious first choice is Baker Mayfield, once Hue Jackson officially names him the starter. Mayfield is in a good situation, surrounded by talent, and showed in his debut that he has the makings of a solid Fantasy quarterback. We'll have Week 4 streamers and waiver wire for you before Tuesday night with more options.
So, what do the projections say? Visit SportsLine now to see what our model expects from the 49ers offense for the rest of the season.
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