The long-awaited start of the Jimmy Garappolo era at San Francisco will commence on Sunday when the 49ers visit the Chicago Bears. Garappolo, who was acquired by the 49ers in a midseason trade with New England, needed just two attempts to throw his first touchdown pass of the season last week playing in relief of injured starter C.J. Beathard.
After snapping its nine-game skid to start the season the 49ers returned to their losing ways by dropping a 24-13 decision to Seattle last week. Garappolo played the game’s final minute and directed a touchdown drive on the game’s final play. Chicago has lost four straight after winning two in a row midway through the season. Rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky threw for just 147 yards with two interceptions in the Bears’ 31-3 loss at Philadelphia last week.
TV: 1 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Bears -3. O/U: 40.5.
ABOUT THE 49ERS (1-10): Beathard (hip, knee) missed practices during the week and coach Kyle Shanahan said he was unsure if he would be able to serve as Garoppolo’s backup on Sunday. This will be Garoppolo’s third career start after making two with New England last season, when he went 42 of 59 for 496 yards and four touchdowns for a passer rating of 119.0. “If (a contract extension) happens over a five-game span, a three-game span, then great, let’s do it,” Shanahan said of Garoppolo, who does not have a deal for next season. “If it doesn’t, no big deal. We can franchise you.”
ABOUT THE BEARS (3-8): This is the third straight season the two teams will meet in Chicago on the first weekend in December, with the Bears winning 26-6 on a cold, snowy day last year. Bringing Trubisky along slowly, Chicago ranks 31st in the NFL in passing, averaging 167.1 yards a game. Jordan Howard leads the rushing attack with 847 yards on the ground and five touchdowns, but he was stymied by the Eagles, gaining just seven yards on six carries.
1. RB Carlos Hyde leads the 49ers with 639 yards rushing, but has only gone over 100 yards in a game once this season.
2. Bears LB Danny Trevathan (calf) returned to practice on a limited basis for the first time since he got hurt in Saints game on Oct. 29 and is questionable.
3. Chicago is 2-4 at home this season, but all four defeats have come by a touchdown or less.
PREDICTION: 49ers 27, Bears 21