The San Francisco 49ers face the Denver Broncos this weekend, and Kyle Shanahan is shuffling the quarterback depth chart for this game. Shanahan announced on Thursday that rookie C.J. Beathard will be the No. 2 quarterback, with Matt Barkley the No. 3. This is not a final determination for the season, as Shanahan mentioned last week they would likely switch it up for this weekend’s game.
Brian Hoyer and the starters are expected to play approximately 20 plays, according to Shanahan. That will likely take Hoyer into the second quarter. Beathard will then come on, and Shanahan anticipates he will play into the second quarter. Barkley will likely play the third and fourth quarter. UDFA Nick Mullens did not play last week, and there is no word on his status for this weekend.
By all accounts, Beathard has excelled in training camp. He was 7 of 11 for 101 yards and two touchdowns against the Chiefs. It remains to be seen if he’ll be able to claim the backup job for the season, but getting him snaps against the Broncos No. 2 defense instead of their No. 3 defense is a valuable test. You know what Barkley brings to the table at this point, so you might as well get a better handle on Beathard against tougher competition.