4/11 34 0 TD 0 INT
19/36 245 1 TD 1 INT
One of these stat lines belongs to a multi-year veteran. The other belongs to a QB playing his first game in the NFL.
Ever since week 1, when a 1-2 punch of Reuben Foster’s high ankle sprain followed by an interception followed by a touchdown, fans had been wondering when the San Francisco 49ers would replace starting QB Brian Hoyer. It was never a matter of “if”, but rather “when”.
For fans and reporters alike, the sudden decline of Hoyer from training camp to the start of the regular season felt unreal. Hoyer looked comfortable and showed poise, and showed off a deep ball not seen during his time in any regular season. Turns out we were fooled, and that Hoyer is really a training camp all star. The poise and comfort came from a slightly higher knowledge of Head Coach Kyle Shanahans scheme that the rest of the offense wasn’t quite caught up on, as well as a young defense not familiar with Defensive Coordinator Robert Salehs scheme. The deep ball was possible because the Niners' porous-at-best offensive line was able to hold a defensive line that has taken a few weeks into the regular season to excel.
This then begs the question: Did the 49ers coaching staff know that Hoyer would underperform compared to what they thought he could do, or did they know and wanted QB CJ Beathard to sit, study, and avoid the big sacks that Hoyer had taken through the first 5 weeks?
19/36 245 1 TD 1 INT
12/25 128 1 TD 1 INT-8/16 113 1 TD
One of these QBs was taken with the 2nd overall pick, and the other was considered a reach in the 3rd round.
People have already started comparing Beathard to Andrew Luck, and while I feel like that isn’t a fair comparison, there are parts of his game that looked pretty good. A comparison to QB Mitch Trubisky may not even be fair, given the abnormal number of injuries to the skill position players and the questionable quality of coaching from John Fox, but there are more similarities than differences.
So what is the point of these comparisons? It’s important to understand just how bad the roster was that GM John Lynch and Shanahan inherited, and that signing or trading for QB Kirk Cousins was never going to change that. Out of the 10 draft picks the 49ers had in 2017, Only 4 went to offensive players and none before the 3rd round. What if Shanahan decides he wants Josh Allen or Sam Darnold? What if he decides he likes the athleticism that Baker Mayfield or Lamar Jackson provide? Especially after reports he liked QB Russell Wilson in the draft process. Looking at these players and the talent they have, and looking at the tenure of Brian Hoyer thus far, if you were in Shanahans shoes, would you want to bring in Kirk Cousins for $25 million/year?
Stay tuned to 49ersHUB for more great content!