49ers sloppy early but backups bolster them to win in preseason opener

From ESPN - August 11, 2017

In Friday's preseason win against the Kansas City Chiefs, the San Francisco 49ers looked the part of a team playing its first preseason game after an offseason of sweeping changes to the front office, coaching staff and roster. At least in the early going.

But the backups came to the rescue, leading a comeback that ultimately resulted in a 27-17 victory at Arrowhead Stadium. In a game that would fit the description of a preseason contest to perfection, the 49ers' starters struggled with costly penalties, mistakes and red zone issues. After the starters departed, the penalties continued, but there were enough big plays to give coach Kyle Shanahan a win in his preseason debut.

It was the first chance to see the new-look Niners under Shanahan, and though there were obvious warts to work on, there also were positives to take from this one. A look at both:

QB depth chart: As expected, Brian Hoyer started and played a pair of series before handing the reins to Matt Barkley. Barkley entered near the end of the first quarter and played through the rest of the first half before ceding the rest of the game to rookie C.J. Beathard. Fourth quarterback Nick Mullens did not get in the game.

When it was starters vs. starters, the 49ers looked ...: Like a team with a lot of work to do. Yes, it was a small sample size as the bulk of the starters on both sides of the ball played just two series each and were out of the game before the end of the first quarter. But the defense allowed a touchdown on the opening drive and the offense failed to generate so much as a first down. Hoyer was 1-of-4 for 3 yards and running back Carlos Hyde had zero yards on two carries before calling it a night. When the starters were in, the Niners were outscored 7-3 and outgained 107 yards to 12.


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