John Beck's play in his third loss as the Washington Redskins' starting quarterback was better than his second, coach Mike Shanahan said Monday.
Perhaps Beck couldn't play much worse than he did in the previous Sunday's 23-0 loss to Buffalo, in which he was sacked 10 times. But in Sunday's 19-11 loss to San Francisco, he at least made quicker passes to limit the 49ers' pass rush to one sack.
Beck was 30-of-47 passing for 254 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
"I thought John did a great job on a number of throws getting the ball out when [San Francisco] did a good job on a couple stunts, and [he] dumped the ball off a lot quicker than the week before," Shanahan said.
"Then a couple times I thought he did it a little bit too quick, where the week before he was kind of standing in there because we were going against a team that wasn't known for a great pass rush, and this team was a lot better. It's a growing experience."
Shanahan believes Beck needs more playing time to find the necessary balance between getting rid of the ball and holding onto it to let plays develop.
"As time goes, he'll feel more comfortable with the system and feel more comfortable actually playing in game situations," he said.
Shanahan would not commit to Beck as his starter for the rest of the season, but his line of thinking seems to indicate that Beck will have continued opportunities to make mistakes and build on them.
Beck arrived at Redskins Park on Monday morning and reviewed several throws that stuck in his mind before analyzing the entire game with coaches later in the day.
"There were a few where you feel like you can stay in there a second longer, or I've got to get the ball out of here earlier," Beck said. "That's part of the game. I'm just trying to do my best to learn from past experiences and improve for the next week."
c Rookie receiver Niles Paul is expected to miss "a couple of weeks" with a sprained toe, Shanahan said. Paul was injured while returning a kickoff against San Francisco.
Shanahan did not provide an update on right tackle Jammal Brown's left groin injury.
c The Redskins' decision to place veteran cornerback Phillip Buchanon (knee/neck/shoulder) on the season-ending injured reserve list resulted from a meeting between Shanahan and Buchanon late last week.
"He was just not your typical Phillip Buchanon [in] practices during the week," Shanahan said. "You could that tell he was in some pain. He was pretty honest with me that he thought it was going to be a while before he came back."
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