Rob Gronkowski’s claims that he knew Jimmy Garoppolo was going to be an elite quarterback have been criticised by some NFL fans.
The San Francisco 49ers QB has started his career out west in impressive fashion, going 15-3 since joining in 2017.
Much of his success has come in 2019, as the Niners are 9-1 through the first 11 weeks of the season, suffering just one defeat to the Seattle Seahawks in overtime.
Garoppolo moved to the to the 49ers from the New England Patriots after being back-up to Tom Brady for several seasons, and played in 17 regular season games.
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And his former Patriots teammate Gronkowski says he has known for a while just how special the 28-year-old quarterback is after watching him up close.
Speaking on Fox Sports NFL ahead of the 49ers game against the Green Bay packers, Gronkowski said he could see that the young QB was going to be a great player as he saw how he blossomed.
“Once he learned that playbook he started to flourish,” Gronk said on FOX NFL Sunday.
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“One time I ran a flag route, it was zone coverage, the DB dropped, the safety was up top and he put it exactly where he needed to put it.
“It was money. And I came up to him and I was like ‘Dang dude, that was a nice pass.’
“And that’s when I knew, at that time, that he was going to be elite.
“And then when he got traded three weeks later, I knew they got a special player in Jimmy G.”
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Some fans have reacted to Gronk’s claims by insisting it is too soon to be able to call Garoppolo “elite”.
“Not many QBs get the elite tag 20 starts into their career,” one fan wrote on social media. “Mahomes may be one of the few to do it. Garoppolo isn’t elite yet. He’s shown some good things. He may get there eventually.”
“When did Jimmy g become elite? It is far too soon,” wrote another fan.
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While another said: “He has started well but elite? I’m not so sure.”
“Long way to go yet, he would’t be putting up those numbers without that defense,” said another fan.
Garoppolo is hoping to lead his team to victory over the 8-2 ranked Packers on Sunday night and he started the game well.
At half-time the 49ers led Aaron Rodgers’ team 23-0 with Garoppolo throwing one touchdown pass, to Deebo Samuel, and zero interceptions.
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