Beathard will remain the 49ers' backup quarterback for the Week 13 game with the Seahawks after coach Kyle Shanahan announced Monday that Nick Mullens would retain the starting role, Curtis Pashelka of The San Jose Mercury News reports.
Mullens will be under center for the fourth consecutive game, but Shanahan made it clear that the Southern Mississippi product's grip on the No. 1 gig is far from secure. Since lighting up the Raiders for 11.9 yards per attempt and three touchdowns in his NFL debut in Week 9, Mullens has regressed badly in his last two outings against mediocre teams in the Giants and Buccaneers, completing 63.4 of his passes for 6.6 YPA, two touchdowns and four interceptions. Mullens will face his stiffest test to date on the road versus the 6-5 Seahawks and could be at risk of getting benched if he struggles for the third game in a row. That would pave the way for Beathard to get another look, but the 2017 third-round pick hasn't proved to be any better of an option through his first two seasons in the league. Over 13 appearances (10 starts), Beathard has completed 57.3 percent of his passes for 6.8 YPA and a 12:13 TD:INT while fumbling eight times.
Beathard may get another chance to start in December, Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Nick Mullens predictably has regressed since his 262-yard, three-score NFL debut Week 9 against Oakland, throwing two touchdowns and four interceptions the past two games (both losses to bad teams). Beathard has his own issues with turnovers, but he does have an advantage over Mullens in size, mobility and arm strength. Looking beyond this season, the 49ers still need to figure out if either player is good enough to serve as their long-term No. 2 quarterback behind Jimmy Garoppolo (knee).
Though Beathard looks to be in decent health after his wrist/thumb injury limited him to backup duties in the Week 9 win over the Raiders, it would have been a major surprise if he reclaimed the top gig after Mullens dazzled in his NFL debut. Mullens torched the Raiders for 262 passing yards and three touchdowns while completing 16 of 22 attempts in the 34-3 win. Perhaps most notable was the fact that Mullens didn't commit a turnover, an area where Beathard (seven interceptions, three lost fumbled) has faltered through his five starts this season. It's possible that Beathard will earn another opportunity to start later in the campaign if Mullens falters in his subsequent opportunities, but for the time being, the second-year signal-caller's future in San Francisco beyond 2018 suddenly looks murky.
After Jimmy Garoppolo went down with a season-ending knee injury in Week 3, Beathard had started the 49ers' subsequent five contests, completing 60.4 percent of his passes while averaging 7.4 yards per attempt and throwing for eight touchdowns and seven interceptions and losing three fumbles. Though a wrist/thumb injury rather than those lackluster numbers resulted limited him to a backup role in Thursday's 34-3 win over the Raiders, Beathard will lose out on the starting gig mostly as a result of Mullens' breakthrough performance. Mullens completed 16 of 22 passes for 262 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions in the Week 9 win, showing incredible poise for a quarterback who had taken no prior NFL snaps. It appears the 49ers will give Mullens at least one more opportunity to prove his worth, though any major downturn in productivity could result in Beathard recapturing the top job.
Coach Kyle Shanahan hasn't announced his plans at quarterback for the 49ers' Week 10 matchup with the Giants, but Beathard seems unlikely to receive the starting nod over Nick Mullens for that contest after the latter's stellar outing in Thursday's 34-3 win over the Raiders, Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Listed as questionable heading into the Week 9 contest with wrist and thumb injuries that had made gripping the football in an issue, Beathard was cleared to suit up but was limited to backup duties. That paved the way for Mullens to pick up his first career start, and the 23-year-old aced the assignment while completing 16 of 22 passes for 262 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions in the rout. Considering that Beathard has been a turnover machine (seven interceptions, three lost fumbles) in his six appearances this season and owns a 1-9 career record as a starter, it makes sense for the 49ers to give Mullens an extended look even if Beathard's health isn't a concern moving forward. With San Francisco not playing until Monday night in Week 10, it may be several more days before Shanahan commits to a quarterback.
|17||12/30/18||@ LAR||4:25 pm|
|2017||San Francisco 49ers||7||5||224||123||54.9||1430||6.38||83||4||6||19/141||16||6||69.2|
|2018||San Francisco 49ers||6||5||169||102||60.4||1252||7.41||82||8||7||18/156||17||4||81.8|
|2017||San Francisco 49ers||7||5||26||136||5.2||16||3||0||9|
|2018||San Francisco 49ers||6||5||19||69||3.6||13||1||0||6|
|2017||San Francisco 49ers||7||1||1.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|2018||San Francisco 49ers||6||2||2.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|
|2017||San Francisco 49ers||7||3||2||0||1||0||0||1||0|
|2018||San Francisco 49ers||6||5||3||0||2||0||0||2||0|