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Shanahan: C.J. Beathard earned a shot to compete for 49ers backup QB role

The backup quarterback role got rather interesting all of a sudden!

The San Francisco 49ers locked in their starting quarterback job fairly early in the offseason, but training camp is bringing a real competition for the backup job. Matt Barkley was brought in to be the backup, but rookie C.J. Beathard has impressed through two weeks of training camp.

On Wednesday, head coach Kyle Shanahan said that Barkley would get second team reps on Friday vs. the Kansas City Chiefs, but “we’ll see how that goes” for the 49ers second preseason game.

On Thursday, Shanahan made an appearance on KNBR, and he was asked if there is a competition at the backup quarterback position. He had this to say:

“Yes, we’ve been rotating with those guys. Matt Barkley got the 2s throughout OTAs, but C.J. did a good job with his 3 reps. When we got our time off, got to get away a little bit, you come back and you really try to study all the OTA practices and minicamp we had, and you start to evaluate those guys — and we really felt C.J. coming into training camp earned the right to compete for the No. 2 spot. That’s how we’ve been doing it so far, and we’ve been rotating throughout practice, and those guys have been battling pretty hard.”

Yesterday, we had a poll question asking who will be the 49ers backup quarterback when Week 1 of the regular season arrives. Beathard is the overwhelming winner in our very unscientific poll, garnering 68 percent of the vote. You’re welcome to continue voting.

Shanahan is pleased with Beathard’s performance thus far, but will it be enough to force a tough decision on the 49ers? I will continue to ponder Brian Hoyer’s injury history in all this, so the question will come down to whether or not the 49ers are comfortable with the very decent chance Beathard might have to start at least one game this year.