Brock Purdy

Why 49ers QB Purdy isn't worried about rest vs. rust conundrum

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SANTA CLARA — The 16 days off from the final preseason game to the 2023 NFL regular-season opener did not have a negative impact on Pro Bowl quarterback Brock Purdy and the 49ers in their Week 1 road win over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

And the bye week earlier this season had a noticeably positive effect on the 49ers in their Week 10 road win over the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Now, Purdy is in the midst three weeks between games, as the 49ers await their NFL playoff opener either Saturday, Jan. 20, or Sunday, Jan. 21, at Levi’s Stadium.

“You go through a beating all year,” Purdy told NBC Sports Bay Area on an upcoming episode of "49ers Talk." “It’s a physical sport. It’s 18 weeks of straight football and competing, and that’s all great.

“So for me to get that rest last week, and obviously this week for the bye and our whole team, I think it’s huge.”

Because the 49ers already clinched the NFC's No. 1 seed heading into the regular-season finale against the Los Angeles Rams, Purdy did not even suit up for the game.

Instead, he arrived at Levi’s Stadium 4 1/2 hours before kickoff and went through a full workout on the practice field before the game. Some of the team’s practice squad receivers ran routes, as Purdy aimed to stay sharp after his record-setting regular season.

“My arm feels fresh again and good to go,” Purdy said. “So that’s good. And I think the next thing is just when you get into a game.

“There’s that rest vs. rust component. I think that’s more with the mental part of it — the decision-making, the speed of the game and being on top of it.”

Purdy has played well upon coming back from long breaks. In the season opener against the Steelers at Acrisure Stadium, Purdy threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Aiyuk to cap the 49ers’ first offensive possession of the season.

Likewise, the 49ers drove for a touchdown with Purdy’s 13-yard touchdown pass to Aiyuk on their first series against Jacksonville after the bye week. San Francisco entered the bye on a three-game losing streak, then reeled off six consecutive victories.

Purdy said it’s imperative to stay mentally focused in meetings and continue to study up on the playbook in order to avoid a slow start after the time off from playing games.

“I came in Game 1 against the Steelers then after the bye week against the Jaguars and was able to produce and do well,” Purdy said. “So we got to remind ourselves of that, too. So it’s all part of the process.”

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