1. Brock Purdy came on the scene three weeks ago when he had to take over as Niners quarterback because of an injury to Jimmy Garoppolo. He’s already become one of the most popular players in the NFL.
Sports fans love a Cinderella story, and having the last pick of this year’s draft take over a team that has a legit chance to win the Super Bowl is as Cinderella as it gets. Especially when he plays well.
Plus, people seem to really get off on saying “Mr. Irrelevant.” It’s like those random sports facts that people constantly bring up as if it’s news. Like Todd Frazier once stood next to Derek Jeter during a game as a kid and then he became a Yankee. Or “Ryan Fitzpatrick went to Harvard.”
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Part of the appeal of Purdy’s story is that he’s just a 22-year-old rookie who looks 16, but plays like he’s 30.
In his three games since taking over for Jimmy G (all wins), which includes two starts, Purdy has completed 58 of 84 passes for 612 yards while throwing six touchdowns, rushing for another and throwing just one interception.
All this means Purdy is becoming a cult-like figure in the NFL world. Here’s a roundup of how social media is reacting to the NFL’s newest star.
2. On Monday, I wrote that Sunday’s Chargers-Dolphins game featured the worst roughing-the-passer call of the season. The refs clearly wanted to make the competition for the honor, tough, so they gave us this gem last night.
3. Derek Jeter was a guest on Eli Manning’s internet show, and at the 13-minute mark the duo had a competition to see who could change a diaper, double-knot a pair of sneakers and make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich the fastest.
4. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen players join fans in doing the wave before, but that’s what happened Thursday night when Grizzlies players got in on the action while they were blowing out the Bucks.
5. ESPN is going all out for the two College Football Playoff semifinal games that will be played Dec. 31. Each game will have nine different telecasts that you can tune into.
6. The newest SI Media Podcast features three segments.
The show begins with a conversation with Sports Illustrated’s Jon Wertheim about longtime colleague Grant Wahl, who tragically died at 49 while covering the World Cup. Wertheim talks about Wahl’s love of soccer, his rise at SI and the kind of person Grant was.
Following Wertheim, Greg Olsen from Fox Sports joins the podcast to talk about his first year as the network’s lead NFL analyst, what it’s like having Tom Brady waiting in the wings to take his job, what he said to Brady when he saw him earlier this season, what he’d like to improve about his broadcasts, his partnership with Kevin Burkhardt and much more.
Following Olsen, Sal Licata from WFAN radio and SNY TV in New York joins me for our weekly “Traina Thoughts” segment. This week, we weigh in on a couple of fantastic Bill Belichick stories, Twitter’s new checkmark system and the stress of holiday tipping.
You can listen to the podcast below or download it on Apple, Spotify and Google.
You can also watch the SI Media Podcast on YouTube.
7. RANDOM VIDEO OF THE DAY: Saw this video about old Pirates manager Jim Leyland and his temper on TikTok last night and had to share it because it’s so good.
Be sure to catch up on past editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on Apple, Spotify or Google. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter, Instagram and TikTok.