Category Archives: Injury updates
No idea yet of the severity of the injury, but the bearer of the pain makes it worth monitoring: WR Michael Crabtree went up for an Alex Smith duck during 7-on-7 this afternoon, and landed hard on his back. He stayed down for a minute, then spent much of practice consulting with a trainer on the sideline. The preliminary diagnosis: a neck strain.
Crabtree eventually headed to the training room for further observation.
It wasn’t like Crab had been a big part of the 49ers’ offense in recent practices. He got “veteran courtesy” – not bad for a guy with 11 career NFL games – Tuesday morning and again Wednesday morning. In between, he sat out a special-teams practice.
The 49ers were in shells rather than full pads this afternoon. But if that took an edge off the excitement, they supplemented with a 2-minute drill to end the final team period. Actually, it was a 1:58 drill, with real NFL officials enhancing the experience.
Beginning at their 20-yard line, Alex Smith and his first-team offense had to convert third- and fourth-down plays to stay alive. The former was a pass across the middle to Michael Crabtree on third-and-5, with OLB Parys Haralson closing on Smith; the latter was another connection with Crabtree on fourth-and-3. The first-down spot may have been generous.
On the next play, Smith found Josh Morgan crossing downfield and he took it for a 42-yard gain. There were 21.2 seconds left. After a brief consultation by the coaches, they decided it was close enough to award a phantom game-winning field goal.
No offense to Scott McKillop, but he will never be mistaken for Patrick Willis, the 49ers’ perennial Pro Bowl linebacker.
That said, this is the NFL, where losing any contributor has a complicated domino effect on the lineup and the roster. When McKillop tore his left ACL and patellar tendon at practice Wednesday, and underwent surgery at Stanford Medical Center today, it created some holes – and some opportunities – within the 49ers.
Notes and observations from this morning’s practice in, believe it or not, Seaside…
• Chilo Rachal, who went face down in practice two days ago and was diagnosed with dehydration, was back in action today as the 49ers practiced on the marine-layered Cal State University Monterey Bay soccer field. (More on the ambience later.) In fact, Rachal seemed to come back with a vengeance. He was very physical today, putting DE Ray McDonald on the ground at one point. TE Nate Byham was back, too, by the way.
• Sitting out practice were C Eric Heitmann (stinger), LG David Baas (concussion), TE Delanie Walker (concussion), ILB Scott McKillop (knee) and G Chris Patrick (shoulder). Rookie Mike Iupati again stood in for Baas, while Tony Wragge replaced Heitmann. Rookie NaVorro Bowman got second-team reps in McKillop’s absence.
Jeff Ferguson, the 49ers’ head trainer, had a surprise for the media today, and he watched with a mischievous grin as we “unwrapped” it. Patrick Willis, the heart of the San Francisco defense, and by now the team’s most recognizable player, was back on the field during team period for the first time since undergoing surgery to repair a bursa sack in his right knee in March.
“There’s nothing like being inside the huddle and actually participate in the practice,” Willis said in the locker room afterward. “It was good just to watch and to get my eyes back right again, but it’s even better to be out there practicing.”
There were few changes on the 49ers’ injury report today. Running back Michael Robinson went from limited practice to full practice. Almost everything else remained the same. Left tackle Joe Staley is not officially “out,” but he will not … Continue reading
Niners offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye speaks with the media every Thursday. Today, he let it be known exactly where he stands as it pertains to the question about the 49ers’ quarterback of the future. Raye has been very impressed … Continue reading
Linebacker Takeo Spikes was the only 49ers player who did not practice today due to health concerns. He sustained a hamstring strain last week against the Bears and looks questionable for Sunday’s game. Rookie Scott McKillop immediately entered the … Continue reading
The 49ers received bad new today as left tackle Joe Staley and cornerback Nate Clements are expected to miss six weeks.
Running back Frank Gore, who missed the past two games with a bum right ankle, went through a full practice today, as the 49ers began preparations to face the Houston Texans on Sunday. Gore had his right ankle taped as … Continue reading
There’s a lot of news today around the 49ers, beginning with the team’s decision to place linebacker Jeff Ulbrich on injured reserve because of his concussion problems. Ulbrich, a popular player in the locker room who maximized his potential … Continue reading
Running back Frank Gore expects to be available when the 49ers return to action Oct. 25 against the Texans. He took part today in individual and group work, and then sat out the 11-on-11 work during today’s practice.
Linebacker Jeff Ulbrich was ruled out for Sunday’s game against the Falcons fter sustaining a concussion three days ago against the Rams. Ulbrich did not practice today.