Is 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy elite? This six-time Pro Bowler doesn’t think so

Purdy’s 4-0 start to the season and an NFL-best 115.1 QBR prompted the question

It only took four weeks for the “elite quarterback” debate to resurface in NFL media circles.

With Brock Purdy’s 4-0 start and an NFL-best 115.1 quarterback rating, former ESPN personality Rich Eisen and NFL Network analyst Gerald McCoy, a six-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle who recently retired, debated whether Purdy is an elite quarterback.

When asked the question, McCoy burst out laughing.

“No,” he replied.

Eisen inquired as to why he was laughing.

“Brock Purdy is not elite, man, c’mon now,” McCoy said on Tuesday’s Rich Eisen Show. “Brock Purdy is good, he is, but… that roster is incredible.” He’s doing well.”

Purdy enters a pivotal Week 5 matchup with the Dallas Cowboys ranked near the top of the NFL in nearly every passing category. He ranks third in completion percentage (72.3%), eighth in yards (1,019), second in yards per attempt (9.1), tied for 12th in touchdown passes (five), and is one of three quarterbacks (along with C.J. Stroud and Joshua Dobbs) who has yet to throw an interception.

Purdy hasn’t thrown a pick in more than 200 consecutive attempts, including the postseason. His completion percentage of 69.1% ranks second only to Geno Smith (69.5%) among quarterbacks who have made at least nine starts in the last two seasons.

“Here’s what I’ll say about Brock Purdy,” McCoy stated. “He’s better than we gave him credit for.” Brock Purdy is no longer just not losing games. He is in fact winning games. To advance as a quarterback, you must win games rather than just not lose them. We can all agree that he’s legit after his recent run. Elite? No. Being elite necessitates a significant investment.”

Eisen retaliated.

“His play has removed the whole conversation of what happened with Trey Lance from the table,” he stated. “That’s no longer there. Because of his play and the contract he has, they can pay Nick Bosa and a slew of other players because of what he’s doing, playing elite quarterback at the rate he’s being paid. Put it all together, the fact that he’s not losing games for them – I know we haven’t seen them down seven, three and a half minutes to go, can Brock Purdy go 80 yards with only one timeout? We haven’t seen anything like that. I see what you’re writing down there.

“But the way he’s playing and the way they’re playing around him, he’s an elite quarterback.”

McCoy, the third overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft out of Oklahoma, spent the majority of his nine-year career on bad Tampa Bay Buccaneers teams that hadn’t yet recruited Tom Brady to play quarterback. However, from 2012 to 2017, he was named to the Pro Bowl in all but one of the Buccaneers’ seasons.

“There are a lot of terms we use too loosely and give it to people too easily,” McCoy stated. “I put in a lot of effort to become a good defensive tackle in this league.” It took a lot for me to be considered elite because I did it on a losing team and was still able to produce while playing from behind. People don’t realize how difficult that is.

“It’s very difficult to be a guy in a small market where no one sees you and still be considered elite.” “I don’t use the word ‘elite.'”

McCoy named Josh Allen, Patrick Mahomes, Joe Burrow, and Lamar Jackson as elite quarterbacks. Purdy, Tua Tagovailoa, Jalen Hurts, and Justin Herbert are among those he does not.

“In order for me to consider you elite, we need to see it more than once,” said McCoy. “To be elite, you need a full season, and then I need to see it twice.” “Two complete seasons.”

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