November 2 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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Jeff Garcia is known as a mobile quarterback. He’s not a running quarterback in the same way that Steve Young was, who had the talent of a running back in the open field, but rather, Garcia scrambles to help his receivers get open, buy some extra time and pick up first downs.
Last season, Garcia injured his knee, and his mobility was thus hampered. Garcia had to learn to stay in the pocket and become a more traditional passer. This season, Garcia’s legs are back with a vengeance, allowing him to take the offense to the high 49ers fans have become accustomed too.
In the 2000 season, Garcia’s ran for 19 first downs. Last season, Garcia picked up 14 after being hampered by his knee injury. With seven games passed, Garcia has already picked up 14 first downs this season by running, and is on pace to run for a total of 32 first downs this season.
Garcia is certainly a more efficient passer when he uses his legs to help improvise and move the sticks. But the entire offense really benefits. If Garcia can stay healthy, he may not put up the 30+ touchdown passes he had in the past two season, but other areas, like his ground game may improve statistically.