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Warner backs Purdy after loss: 'He's the reason' 49ers reached NFC title game

Kevin Sabitus / Getty Images Sport / Getty

San Francisco 49ers linebacker Fred Warner showed support for rookie quarterback Brock Purdy following Sunday's 31-7 NFC title game loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.

Purdy - the last pick in the 2022 NFL Draft - entered Sunday with a 7-0 record as a starter, including the playoffs. However, his first pro campaign had a bittersweet ending after he suffered an elbow injury in the first quarter against the Eagles.

"He ain't got nothing to be sad about. He's the reason we even got to this game," Warner said postgame. "When Jimmy (Garoppolo) went down against the (Miami) Dolphins, we didn't know what our season was going to be. And he came in and did a heck of a job. He's the reason we're here right now.

"Him getting hurt and Josh (Johnson) getting hurt, we just couldn't do enough to find a way to win."

The 49ers replaced Purdy with Johnson following the former's only two pass attempts versus Philadelphia. Johnson - San Francisco's fourth-string quarterback who didn't join the team until December - went 7-for-13 passing on Sunday before suffering a concussion in the third quarter that ruled him out for the remainder of the contest.

Purdy reentered the game but was visibly limited.

"My arm felt like it stretched out," Purdy said, according to Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports. "Just felt like a really a lot of shocks all over from my elbow down to my wrist, front and back. Just pain really all over."

Niners head coach Kyle Shanahan said he still doesn't know the severity of Purdy's injury.

San Francisco began the season with Trey Lance as its starting quarterback, but Lance's campaign prematurely ended in Week 2 due to an ankle injury. Backup Garoppolo then made 10 starts until a foot ailment sidelined him on Dec. 4.

Purdy accounted for 18 touchdowns in eight appearances before the NFC Championship Game.

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