Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports



C.J. Beathard will likely continue to be the starting quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers -- for at least one more game. Newly acquired quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is busy studying his new offense's playbook and head coach Kyle Shanahan would prefer not to throw him into a game before he is ready.

Beathard, a third-round draft pick out of Iowa in April, has been with the 49ers for the entire offseason and had ample time to prepare for his first significant playing time, which came during a Week 6 contest against the Washington Redskins. Beathard has since started the next two games and figures to do so again on Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.

Over his shoulder is the 49ers' potential quarterback of the future. San Francisco gave up a second-round pick for the former New England Patriots backup with hopes that he can be a long-term answer at the position.

Shanahan explained on Wednesday that the move to acquire Garoppolo had nothing to do with Beathard's performance through nearly three games, but everything to do with improving the football team.

"As I told C.J. when it happened, this move has nothing to do with C.J.," Shanahan said. "This move has to do with a responsibility to the organization. When opportunities come around that can help the organization, you don't hesitate on it. I have a lot of confidence in C.J. By no means has everything been perfect these last two-and-a-half weeks he's played, but I've been excited about a lot of the things that he has done.

"He has had some bumps in the road like first-time players will have and like a lot of veterans will have," Shanahan said. "I think C.J. has shown a lot of things that we're excited about and I think C.J. will continue to get better. If we get better around him too, that will help him get a lot better also."

Through three games and two starts, Beathard has completed just 52.7-percent of his passes for 647 yards, two touchdowns, and three interceptions. He has a passer rating of 65.2. The player who he replaced, Brian Hoyer, had a passer rating of 74.1 through just over five games this season. Hoyer has since been released by the 49ers and signed by the Patriots.

Shanahan said he called Beathard following the trade.

"I speak to C.J. a lot and I've told C.J. how I feel about him before this," Shanahan said. "I feel no different. I said, 'C.J., this wasn't something that had really anything to do with you. This had to do with an opportunity that presented itself, and we feel it was the right decision for our organization, and I have a lot of confidence in you.' I told him that stuff the last few weeks after each game and just told him the truth."

How did Beathard respond to the news?

"He responded great," Shanahan said. "C.J.'s a very confident person, very mature, acts like a man, very honest person, keeps it real. There's no agenda with C.J. He's just going to work and keep his head down and do the best he can."