SF 49ers Quarterbacks
Lock: Jimmy Garoppolo, Nick Mullens
Strong bubble: C.J. Beathard
Weak bubble: none
Long shot: none
No bigtime drama here. And if there is, it’s centered around whether or not Kyle Shanahan keeps three quarterbacks instead of the commonly kept two on a 53-man roster.
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Last year, however, set a precedent. Shanahan kept three — Jimmy Garoppolo, Nick Mullens and C.J. Beathard — despite it using up a roster spot that could have otherwise been allocated to address other positions where injuries were piling up.
Beathard, who lost the battle for the No. 2 job behind Garoppolo, ended up being inactive for all 16 regular-season games and the three postseason contests.
There’s the chance Shanahan shakes things up a bit and tries to sneak Beathard onto the practice squad, since the quarterback would be eligible now in light of the 2020 rule changes, thereby landing him on the strong bubble. And with Beathard’s 1-9 record as a starter, a waiver claim by another team seems rather unlikely.
Still, that would remain a key risk with the COVID-19 pandemic potentially striking anyone else on the position’s depth chart at any time.
A worst-case scenario would be Jimmy G landing on the reserve/COVID-19 list after the 49ers waive Beathard, yet Beathard somehow ended up getting claimed by another team, leaving Mullens the sole signal-caller with current knowledge of Shanahan’s system.
It’s a risk Shanahan won’t take. San Francisco will keep three quarterbacks.