NFL: Thanks to Brock Purdy and Jalen Hurts, 49ers and Eagles on the threshold of the Super Bowl
Don’t miss the game between the 49ers and the Eagles, Sunday at 3 p.m., on RDS and RDS.ca.
PHILADELPHIA — In San Francisco, late-game meltdowns seem to be ingrained in the collective memory.
Take the Super Bowl against Kansas City following the 2019 season. The 49ers became the third team in the prestigious classic’s history to squander a 10-point second-half lead, only to lose to the Chiefs.
There was also the National Conference Finals last year, when the 49ers were unable to protect a 17-7 lead due to a failed interception, a conservative call in a fourth try and interception by the Los Angeles Rams on the 49ers’ final offensive push. With, as the end result, a victory for the Rams.
Another wasted opportunity to win a title that is hard to forget.
« If you go back to last year, we were a few games away from qualifying for the Super Bowl again, » noted wide receiver Deebo Samuel.
“What are we really going to have to do to get there? We will need to minimize errors, and all players will need to go about their assigned tasks. »
It’s an arduous task for any club, let alone a team that has to travel to Philadelphia where the cold awaits a finalist for the title of most valuable player to his team and the club the highest ranked in the National Association.
It will be wildly loud – or should we say crazy and loud? – at Lincoln Financial Field.
The 49ers say they are ready. They’ve won 12 straight, including seven straight since rookie quarterback Brock Purdy, a seventh-round draft pick, took charge of the offense after Jimmy Garoppolo was injured.
Near perfection is a notion no stranger to the Eagles who, in Jalen Hurts, rely on a quarterback elected to the Pro Bowl and who posted a 14-1 record in the regular season, in addition to their victory against the New York Giants last week in the second round of the playoffs.
Hurts is playing despite the lingering effects of a right shoulder sprain that cost him two games. He’s working overtime in anticipation of his biggest test of the season against the top-ranked 49ers defense.
« It’s in his DNA to be here all the time, working on his craft, » Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni said.
“Whether it’s in the weight room, whether it’s the physical therapy room, whether it’s the video room, his obsession is to get better. »
Some observers doubted that Hurts would become a true franchise quarterback when training camp began. He basically took the worries away after the Eagles won in the first game of the season, against the Detroit Lions. Thereafter, he never ceased to pile up impressive statistics and victories, to the point of being a finalist for the title of most valuable player in the NFL.
All that could keep Hurts out of the Super Bowl is the player who was last picked in the most recent NFL Draft.
Perhaps what’s helping the 49ers goes beyond just Purdy’s performances — he’s had a meteoric rise this season from « Mr. Irrelevant » to an undefeated quarterback who’ll make the National Conference Finals. He has no memory of the 49ers collapsing in the Super Bowl. He has nothing to do with the rout against the Rams.
Purdy just knows how to win.
« He has a natural talent to play in that position and that’s why it’s nice to be his coach because when he makes a mistake and accomplishes things he can see it, he can tell why. , we can see it and we can all relate to it,” 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said.