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Arians on pummeled 49ers QB: 'God bless Beathard'

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If San Francisco 49ers fans call for Jimmy Garoppolo to start anytime soon, all coach Kyle Shanahan need do is pop in a highlight tape of Sunday's loss to the Arizona Cardinals.

The film will show quarterback C.J. Beathard getting pulverized by the Cards' defense. The rookie was sacked five times, hit 16 times, and pressured on nearly every drop back.

Cardinals coach Bruce Arians' assessment of the situation is both positive and somewhat sad, depending on your rooting bent.

"I thought we should have had more (sacks)," Arians said, via the Cardinals official website. "That was a beat-up offensive line. God bless Beathard. He's tough as nails and stood in there and threw the ball, because we hit him a bunch."

The Niners were without left tackle Joe Staley on Sunday. Waiting at least until the blindside stalwart returns might be the best long-term move for Garoppolo and the 49ers. Putting Jimmy G behind that offensive line won't provide the needed conditions for a positive evaluation and puts the QB at risk of injury.

Of course, that assessment means tossing poor Beathard to the wolves to protect a player who has been with the franchise less than a week.

Give the rookie from Iowa credit. He's taken 14 sacks the past three weeks, gets up, dusts himself off and goes back to the huddle.

"That's what so impressive to me about him," Shanahan said, via the San Jose Mercury News. "I think those hits affect almost everybody. I haven't seen them affect him."

What did Garoppolo think of Beathard taking all those shots?

"He's a tough dude to get up from that," Garoppolo said. "It's hard to be a quarterback in this league and take hits like that."

That could be you pretty soon, Jimmy.

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