Kyle Shanahan confirmed that quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo will play during the team's exhibition opener against the Dallas Cowboys at Levi's Stadium on Thursday night. While that was expected, the San Francisco 49ers head coach revealed a little bit about what the preseason plan is for his starting quarterback.

"We'll treat him like what we've probably done more in the past," Shanahan told reporters on Tuesday. "He'll play somewhat into the first quarter. We'll see how long the opening drive is. Usually, in the second game, you play guys a little more into the second quarter. Usually, the third game, they play the whole first half and sometimes start the third quarter. Then in the fourth game, they rarely play."

So fans will be able to see Garoppolo and the first-team offense for at least one series but probably not much more than that.

The other quarterbacks on the roster are C.J. Beathard, Nick Mullens, and Jack Heneghan. Last year, the 49ers entered the season with two quarterbacks on the active roster (Brian Hoyer and Beathard to start and ended up with Garoppolo and Beathard) and Mullens on the practice squad.

Other Notes

  • Jonathan Cooper is unlikely to play against Dallas as the team continues to ease him back from injury.
  • Rookie right tackle Mike McGlinchey will play with the first-team offense and may get a little more time with the starters.
  • Cornerback Jimmie Ward will start in place of Richard Sherman.
  • Shanahan doesn't want the defensive starters to be on the field too long but also wants them to receive reps. Positions with less depth will see players receiving more playing time.