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49ers vs. Chargers: San Francisco Week 4 Game Balls & Highlights

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San Francisco 49ers Los Angeles Chargers Week 4 Game Balls Highlights
© Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

We hand out a pair of game balls to the San Francisco 49ers from the Niners’ 29-27 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 4 of the 2018 NFL regular season.

On yesterday’s Locked On 49ers Podcast, host Brian Peacock provided a rundown of the game — including game notes and key takeaways — and handed out two game balls from the San Francisco 49ers’ loss to the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 4 of the 2018 NFL regular season.

Sunday marked quarterback C.J. Beathard‘s first start of the season, after the 49ers lost starting QB Jimmy Garoppolo for the rest of the year due to a knee injury sustained in last week’s loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.

49ers TE George Kittle

Tight end George Kittle led the 49ers in receptions, targets, receiving yardage and touchdowns against the Chargers. Kittle quickly became the go-to receiver for Beathard — the second-year tight end’s college quarterback at Iowa — as Kittle’s six-catch, 125-yard performance also included three third-down conversions.

After amassing 515 receiving yards his rookie season, Kittle now ranks third among NFL tight ends with 316 receiving yards over the first four games of 2018. Pro Football Focus currently ranks Kittle as the NFL’s top tight end, with a 90.0 overall grade, thanks to a 90.7 receiving grade:

 

49ers QB C.J. Beathard

In his first start of 2018, Beathard played well enough for the 49ers to win. The second-year quarterback’s 82-yard touchdown pass to Kittle kept San Francisco within striking distance, but unfortunately, the Niners’ final comeback drive fell short when Beathard’s pass was intercepted in the closing minutes of the game.

While the interception was partially Beathard’s fault due to a missed pre-snap read, his other interception was solely the fault of tight end Garrett Celek, who knocked a red-zone pass up into the air, and into the hands of Chargers cornerback Trevor Williams.

Despite the two picks, Beathard finished the game with a quarterback rating of 82.9, after throwing for 298 yards and two touchdowns. The 49ers’ former backup QB demonstrated the grit he’s famous for, as he kept taking big hits and multiple roughing-the-passer penalties, but hung tough in the pocket and continued to fight for extra yardage when he scrambled:

Listen to Locked On 49ers host Brian Peacock’s review of the San Francisco 49ers’ Week 4 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers — including game notes and key takeaways from the Niners’ fourth game of the season — on yesterday’s Rapid React podcast:

Chris Wilson is the Lead Writer for Locked on 49ers, a FanRag Sports network partner. You may have seen Chris’ work on NFL game theory, statistical analysis and film breakdowns at FanSided, NinerNoise, 49erswebzone, Insidethe49 and others. Follow Chris on Twitter @cgawilson.

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