Behind Enemy Lines: 49ers get ready to host the Cardinals in Santa Clara
Since $100 million quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo was sidelined with a torn ACL, the San Francisco 49ers have turned to quarterback C.J. Beathard to guide the offense and turn around the 49ers season, which has gotten off to a rocky 1-3 start.
The timing couldn’t be better as the Arizona Cardinals are scheduled to roll into Santa Clara for a Sunday matinee, the first road start of rookie quarterback Josh Rosen’s young career.
The 49ers are coming off a 29-27 defeat after blowing a fourth quarter lead to the Los Angeles Chargers.
San Francisco has given up at least 24 points to each of their four opponents this season, while the Cardinals haven’t scored more than 17 in a game yet.
What gives? We keep you posted with the latest from the Bay.
It’s Behind Enemy Lines.
Saturday, October 6
• 49ers add WR Bolden, DL Delaire before facing Cardinals (Mercury News)
The 49ers not only activated wide receiver Victor Bolden Jr. to their roster Saturday but they also elevated defensive lineman Ryan Delaire from the practice squad, making both available for Sunday’s home game against the Cardinals.
• NFL picks: 49ers vs. Cardinals Week 5 score predictions (NBC Sports Bay Area)
The 49ers (1-3) take on an NFC West foe Sunday in front of their home fans at Levi’s Stadium.
Will the losing streak come to an end when the Cardinals (0-4) come to town? The 49ers will be leaning on C.J. Beathard under center while Arizona has turned to rookie Josh Rosen.
• Four 49ers to watch in Sunday’s game vs. Arizona Cardinals (NBC Sports Bay Area)
After playing three of the team’s first four games on the road, the 49ers go against an NFC West opponent for the first time when the winless Arizona Cardinals come to Levi’s Stadium on Sunday.
Here are four players to watch, as the 49ers enter Sunday’s game in search of their second win of the season.
• 49ers-Cardinals injury report: Jimmie Ward re-injures hamstring (NBC Sports Bay Area)
Cornerback Jimmie Ward, coming off of two consecutive starts, is back on the injury report with a hamstring injury he sustained during practice on Thursday.
• 49ers, quarterback C.J. Beathard aim to prove they’re ready for prime time (San Francisco Chronicle)
The 49ers, who no longer have their telegenic franchise quarterback, have a 1-3 record and a schedule that includes five prime-time games in the next 56 days.
The reaction from the NFL: Did Joe Montana or Steve Young officially submit those retirement papers?
Friday, October 5
When Kyle Shanahan arrived at work before sunup on Friday, he found an unusually busy weight room.
• On the 49ers: Why things should go up from here (Sacramento Bee)
Beating a downtrodden club like the Cardinals, with rookie quarterback Josh Rosen making his first career road start, would give San Francisco some optimism heading into the easier portion of the schedule.
• Five things to watch when 49ers play Cardinals (Sacramento Bee)
Here are five things to watch Sunday when the 49ers take on the winless Arizona Cardinals at Levi’s Stadium.
• 49ers practice: Top things we learned Friday (Mercury News)
Veteran Joe Staley left home about 5:30 a.m. Friday, headed to the 49ers facility and met up with three other starting linemen before dawn to rehabilitate knee injuries. Their unified goal: to play in Sunday’s game against the Arizona Cardinals.
• Kyle Shanahan wants balanced 49ers offense, knows it’s not that easy (NBC Sports Bay Area)
Shanahan said just because the 49ers tilted heavily toward the passing game last week does not mean it will work out the same way Sunday if the Arizona Cardinals put an eighth defender in the box to stop the run. The Cardinals’ defense ranks 31st in the NFL against the run.
• 49ers vs. Cardinals: Five keys to winning at home (Mercury News)
Here are five keys to the 49ers (1-3) beating the Arizona Cardinals (0-4) on Sunday at Levi’s Stadium.
• Can 49ers disrupt QB Rosen, end seven-game skid to Cardinals? (Mercury News)
The last time Solomon Thomas came across Josh Rosen on the football field, it was in the backfield of a 2016 Stanford-UCLA game at the Rose Bowl.
Thursday, October 4
• C.J. Beathard unfazed by naysayers as he settles in as 49ers’ starting QB (NBC Sports Bay Area)
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported this week that NFL officials would like the 49ers to trade for Philadelphia Eagles backup quarterback Nick Foles in order to draw better TV ratings.
“You can’t hit a receiver high, you can’t hit them low, you can’t push them, you can barely press them. It’s making it really difficult for teams to combat them,” Sherman said.
• Victor Bolden returns from suspension, prepares to play vs. Cardinals (NBC Sports Bay Area)
Wide receiver Victor Bolden returned to the 49ers this week after serving a four-game suspension, and he immediately began preparing as if he might be needed Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.
• How C.J. Beathard has matured in Year 2 of Kyle Shanahan’s offense (Sacramento Bee)
“I think he’s gotten better knowing where people are, faster with it. That happens the more you play in a system,” coach Kyle Shanahan said of Beathard. “So he’s much further ahead this year than he was last year.”
• Too soon to say if a star is Bourne on 49ers receiving corps? (Mercury News)
Kendrick Bourne, typically the backup to Pierre Garçon at flanker (“Z”), got thrust into the split-end role (“X”) as Marquise Goodwin and Dante Pettis sustained injuries in Sunday’s 29-27 loss at the Chargers.
• C.J. Beathard’s top skill presents the 49ers with a conundrum (Mercury News)
In his seven games as the Niners’ starter at the most important position in the sport, Beathard has taken a downright beating. … Given the level of punishment, It’s truly incredible Beathard was able to finish Sunday’s game. And if he continues to take hits at this rate, it’ll be truly incredible if he finishes the season.
Wednesday, October 3
• Cardinals, like 49ers, focus on improved tackling to turn around bad start (NBC Sports Bay Area)
The 49ers’ tackling problem has been an ongoing topic through the first four games of the season. And their upcoming opponent is having the same kinds of discussions, too.
• 49ers-Cardinals injury reports: Three S.F. offensive linemen sit (NBC Sports Bay Area)
Each of the linemen, along with wide receiver Marquise Goodwin, is questionable for Sunday’s game. Goodwin is battling injuries to his hamstring and thigh. Rookie receiver Dante Pettis also did not practice, and has been ruled out with a knee injury.
• 49ers Garoppolo has knee surgery, McKinnon gives advice (Mercury News)
Jimmy Garoppolo underwent surgery Wednesday on his left knee, having torn the anterior cruciate ligament 10 days earlier in a devastating injury that ended the quarterback’s season and racked the 49ers franchise.
Garoppolo’s teammate, Jerick McKinnon, knows all too well the pain Garoppolo is enduring.
• Maybe Greg Mabin can assist 49ers’ struggling secondary? (San Francisco Chronicle)
After four games, the 49ers are on pace to allow 44 passing touchdowns and have four interceptions this season, but help might be on the way.
Here comes … cornerback Greg Mabin to the rescue?
Tuesday, October 2
• Joe Staley avoids long-term injury; 49ers not ready to add another QB (San Francisco Chronicle)
The team announced that Joe Staley would be questionable for Week 5 after sustaining a knee injury in the teams loss to the Chargers. Due to other injuries an issues at other positions, the 49ers are not expected to make a move at quarterback despite bringing in seven players to work out last week after Jimmy Garoppolo was ruled out for the rest of the season.
• 49ers notes: Kyle Shanahan explains how Chargers’ mistake clinched win (NBC Sports Bay Area)
One of the deciding plays in the 49ers loss in Week 4 was a busted all-out blitz. Safety Derwin James blitzed on a play that he was supposed to drop back into pass coverage and ended up getting to quarterback C.J. Beathard forcing an interception. A rookie mistake the 49ers were set to take advantage of, but couldn’t.
• 49ers mailbag: Do Lynch and Co. have a problem evaluating talent? (Sacramento Bee)
Pro Football Focus graded the 49ers’ three worst defensive starters on Sunday as three draft picks from the 2017 NFL Draft. While the panic isn’t there yet, there is some shine wearing off the team’s draft class last year.
One of the 49ers’ biggest issues through four games has been tackling. Those struggles continued on Sunday, even after the team tweaked the practice schedule to work on tackling more.
• On C.J. Beathard’s latest beating: How many starts can 49ers’ QB make? (San Francisco Chronicle)
One of quarterback C.J. Beathard’s best qualities also has a drawback: He routinely resembles a human piñata.