Garoppolo, Patricia meet again in 49ers-Lions clash

Matt Patricia and Jimmy Garoppolo will go head-to-head as rivals for the first time when the Detroit Lions visit the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday in Santa Clara, Calif., in a game matching teams that lost their openers.In a longtime rivalry that’s been dormant since 2015, the 49ers (0-1) have prevailed in the last 12 contests in San Francisco.This will be the first meeting at Levi’s Stadium, and the first time the Lions have faced a team quarterbacked by Garoppolo.The Lions’ initial run-in with New York Jets rookie Sam Darnold was impressive for 20 seconds. That’s how long it took strong safety Quandre Diggs to pick off the former USC star’s first NFL pass and return it for the first touchdown of the Patricia head-coaching era in Detroit (0-1).But the former New England Patriots coordinator’s defense did little right after that, with the Jets rolling up 349 yards of total offense, including 169 on the ground, to embarrass the Lions 48-17.”We’re obviously pushing forward and trying to learn and grow and get better at everything we’re doing right now,” Patricia said of the 9-7 club he signed on to coach. “I don’t see any issue there whatsoever.”If Patricia’s second try for a first win has any better chance of succeeding, it’s probably due in part to him being quite a bit more familiar with the opposing quarterback this week.He and Garoppolo worked together for almost four seasons in New England, with Tom Brady’s understudy often relegated to running the scout team against Patricia’s defense.Garoppolo noted this week that he probably knows as much about what to expect from the Lions’ coach as Patricia does of the San Francisco quarterback.