Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports



Rookie quarterback C.J. Beathard will start his second NFL game on Sunday when the San Francisco 49ers travel to Philadelphia to face the Eagles. It's a tall order for a rookie quarterback. Philadelphia is 6-1 and owns the best record in the NFL. As of Thursday, the Eagles are 14-point favorites over the winless 49ers, according to Yahoo! Sports.

49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan is spending a lot of time with his rookie quarterback in an effort to better prepare him. It's a lot more time than he got to spend with Beathard prior to the young player being named as the starting quarterback. Most of the practice reps and the time reviewing film now belongs to Beathard, who took over for an ineffective Brian Hoyer during a Week 6 contest against the Washington Redskins.

How has Shanahan enjoyed working with Beathard? The head coach answered that question during an interview with KNBR on Thursday night.

"I've been enjoying it with C.J.," Shanahan said. "By no means was he perfect. He missed a few reads, especially early in that game. But that's stuff that I expect, especially him getting out there, going through this process. The thing I enjoy about C.J. is, when he does make a mistake, before he watches the tape, he can explain to you what he saw. He's never just sitting there watching the rush and trying to guess what's going down the field. He sees things, he can articulate it, and then when you can get into the film, you can show him and he can see why he saw something wrong.

"When you're dealing with people like that, those are the guys who have a chance to improve. You watch a lot of quarterbacks in this league, whether it's Peyton Manning, you can look at Carson Wentz last year. You can go back to a lot of people and you watch them earlier in their career and a lot of these top quarterbacks have thrown a lot of picks because they go in there and they let it rip. The good ones, they realize and they learn from those mistakes and you realize they weren't guessing. They saw something wrong and they learned from that pick and they're not going to let it happen again.

"And those are some of the growing pains that you have with young people but when they think the right way and they're made of the right stuff and they continue to work at it, you get better from going through that stuff."

Shanahan even went on to describe a mistake his young quarterback learned from. It was a play from Sunday's 40-10 loss to the Dallas Cowboys.

"There was a big play that we had in the game and we thought versus Tampa 2, that Mike linebacker would take it away and he'd have to go to number two," Shanahan said. "We got in the game and he came out to throw to the guy and he didn't and he went to number two. He came to the sidelines and I was like, 'Why didn't you throw it?' He goes, 'Coach, it was Tampa 2.' I was like, 'I know, but the Mike busted. He didn't even run down the middle.'

"Actually, the guy he should have taken away ended up being open. He was like, 'Aw man.' It was good and bad because you're right, you did read the coverage right but you've still got to see the throw. The Mike linebacker busted. Even though you saw Tampa 2 by the safeties, the guy was still open. You've got to throw it to him and that's stuff he learns because he studied during the week."

You can listen to the entire interview with Shanahan below.


Through two games, Beathard has completed 55.4-percent of his passes for 480 yards, a touchdown, and an interception. He has also run the football six times for 44 yards and a touchdown.