Brock Purdy

Why RG3 believes Purdy was NFL's best QB in 2023 season

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Brock Purdy finished fourth in NFL MVP voting, but one former quarterback believes 49ers' signal-caller was the gold standard at the position during the 2023 season.

Robert Griffin III -- who won 2012 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year with 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan as his offensive coordinator in Washington -- explained why he believes Purdy was the NFL's best quarterback this season despite the narrative that he is is a product of his environment.

"When we look at it from a big-picture standpoint, most quarterbacks have guys and they're surrounded with extreme talent when they win," Griffin said on RG3 and The Ones. "It just so happens that because Brock Purdy is Mr. Irrelevant and was the last pick in the draft, people are very slow to accept the fact that he was the best quarterback in the NFL this year.

"That's just by the numbers. You're talking about first in QBR, first in passer rating, first in touchdown percentage and first in EPA per play. The list goes on and on of what Brock Purdy was able to accomplish, and it wasn't just the scheme … if he's always throwing to wide-open people, why is he first in the NFL in tight-window throws?"

Griffin detailed how Purdy further solidified his belief with a valiant performance in Super Bowl LVIII before offering an interesting take regarding the abundance of criticism the 24-year-old has received despite his highly efficient play.

"There's no way you come away from that game [Super Bowl LVIII] and you say, 'Oh yeah, he's just a game manager,' " Griffin said. "There wasn't any moment in the game when you said to yourself, 'He can't compete at this level.' There wasn't any moment in the season, in totality, where you said, 'Brock Purdy just can't get it done.

"Did he have a bad game against the Ravens? Yeah, he had a bad game against the Ravens. Did he have a couple other where he was a little off in the middle of the year? Yeah, when they lost those three games in a row.

"But when I look at the way people breakdown Brock Purdy, I don't think it really has anything to do with Brock Purdy. I think it has more so to do with how they feel about themselves and how they wish they had that opportunity that he has been blessed with, with the weapons around him."

Purdy finished the 49ers' Super Bowl loss to the Kansas City Chiefs with 255 passing yards and one touchdown, leading San Francisco's offense on three consecutive scoring drives to take the lead in the fourth quarter and overtime in the heartbreaking loss.

The 24-year-old quarterback threw for 31 regular-season touchdowns while posting a league-leading 9.6 yards per attempt in his sophomore NFL campaign.

While the 49ers fell short of their coveted sixth Vince Lombardi Trophy, Purdy at least proved that San Francisco has a viable quarterback for the foreseeable future.

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