SANTA CLARA – Coming off the worst back-to-back starts of his NFL career, Brian Hoyer’s last game could not have started any worse.
His interception on an ill-advised pass intended for Marquise Goodwin brought audible groans and a few boos from the crowd at Levi’s Stadium.
The 49ers have no other legitimate option. Rookie C.J. Beathard won the backup job over Matt Barkley to open the regular season, but Hoyer is clearly the team’s better quarterback.
Hoyer rebounded from the early disaster, which helped provide the Los Angeles with a 7-0 lead just 12 seconds into the game. He completed 23 of 37 pass attempts for 332 yards with two touchdowns and one interception the rest of the way in the 49ers’ 41-39 loss last Thursday night.
“I’m always going to play as hard as I can until the game’s over,” Hoyer said on Wednesday, as the 49ers prepare for Sunday’s game at the Arizona Cardinals.
“That’s the one thing is if you let it kind of linger and keep going it could affect the way you play. I think for me the biggest thing was obviously that first play didn’t go the way I wanted it to, but you come over, shake it off and go to the next play.”
Still, that does not mean he pushed his first-play mistake completely out of his mind. During a break in the a little later in the game, Hoyer said he approached Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman and gave a back-handed compliment to the man who intercepted his game-opening pass.
“I went up to Nickell and said, ‘Hey, man, good guess,’” Hoyer said. “You know what I mean? It’s the first play of the game. We’ve got our fastest guy going in motion and he (Robey-Coleman) didn’t move. So good play by him. The only thing I could’ve done is just thrown it in the stands. So he made a good play and you just move on to the next one. That’s really all you can do.”