Patrick Willis to miss the rest of the season

The 49ers just announced that they have placed Patrick Willis (toe) on the Injured Reserve list. The Niners signed running back Alfonso Smith to take Willis’ place on the 53-man roster.

This article has 81 Comments

  1. F@%* Just when you can see Bowman, Willis and Smith together again to form the best LB corps in the NFL. A stupid toe. “Oh, it’s not turf toe, its not that bad.” Out for the year. Good grief.

    1. Who said that?I’m Not to one to defend the media, but most accounts I read were conservative with the predictions and noted that it is an inexact diagnosis and could be anywhere from a couple weeks to a season ender.

    2. Turf-toe is a nagging and painful injury.
      Playing on some early artificial turfs back in the 70-80′ I had the unpleasant experience of getting turf-toe a couple of times.
      Feels like your toe is jammed at the knuckle and almost any movement brings on a shooting pain.

      I wish PWill a fast a full recovery. We need our all-pro back next season and beyond.

  2. Also seeing reports that Bowman is still feeling pain in his knee and no guarantee he’ll be available this year.

    Anyone still think the Borland pick was a waste?

    1. Nope, seeing how I mocked him to the 49ers and marveled at his tackling proficiency and football instincts….

      1. Razor,
        Same here. I had him on my pre-draft mocks, but the player I wanted was WR Kevin Benjamin. I feel we could have made a deal for Benjamin and still have enough draft power to make a push for Borland.
        I guess you can’t always have your cake and eat it to ;> )

    2. I’m not surprised they drafted an ILB, but I was down on Borland earlier this year. I was wrong. The kid can play and he’ll continue to get better.

      1. Don’t feel badly about dinging Borland. Many scouts and draftniks thought Zach Thomas of the Miami Dolphins could not play, too, and he was exceptional for years.

  3. Terrible news for PW.
    They need to not rush Bowman back.
    The Offense must pick it up to compensate for the losses on Defense. We need another 7 points a game and another 5+ minutes of possession to keep the defense off the field a little more.

  4. Tough blow, tough loss. Huge loss. Still, Fangio has found a way and Baalke has provided some nice pieces.

    Aldon’s return will be big in many ways.

    With all those losses one would think that the defense is the one stumbling. Ironically it is the offense. I still think they are giving Kap some much needed OJT, with a mind toward the playoffs.

  5. As I don’t want to applaud injuries but the bug hit Seattle this week also. Cameron Membane done for the year.

    1. In Seattle, they’re going insane in the Mebane.

      FYI, I believe his first name is Brandon, not Cameron.

    1. Cool, I really like Shane Skov.
      Dynamic player at Stanford before blowing out his knee.
      Like to see him work his way onto the 53 sometime soon.

      1. AES,

        They promoted Chase Thomas to the 53 man roster last week. It would be cool to see Skove as well, but I’m not hoping for that since it would mean another injury – something we don’t need right now. It sounds like Skuta is hurt and may not play this week. Thomas may see some playing time this week.

        1. Nick,
          I hear ya. We don’t need anymore injuries period.
          Chase is a good ball’r, has good size and adequate speed.

          Skov was looking slow in preseason and didn’t seem to take good angles at the point of attack.
          If he could learn to take better angles it would help compensate for some of the speed deficiency. I’ll never forget his 12 tackle 3 sack performance against Virginia Tech in the 2011 Orange Bowl. The kid was absolutely dominant in that game.

    1. Borland’s play excites me, too, but let’s not get too crazy, now. No fan around here is ever going to ‘forget’ Patrick Willis.

    2. So you are saying that a rookie is going to make us forget about a HOF linebacker, the best LB to ever don the Niner uniform? Really? Please, no more clown statements.

      1. Careful, DaNiners. Dave Wilcox is in the HOF already. I defer to him as best Niner backer ever. PW probably needs a couple of more fine years to get in.

          1. Hahaha. Harvey Brown anyone? He may have been the hardest hitter ever on the Niners. He was not allowed to practice.
            Loved some ILBs: Reynolds, Millen,
            Ellison. So instinctive.
            Technically, Haley was a LB. He was pretty good. (I would have had to fire him too).

        1. Last year Bowman was the best line backer, but not over all the years they’ve played together. Willis and Bowman are 1a and 1b in terms of skill sets. I’d put Aldon in there too. Do you think Urlacher will get in to the HOF? Willis is very good but there are some other good ILB’s out there not in too.

          Its a tired phrase for you to say Borland will make us forget Willis and disrespectful too. Borland is exciting but he won’t erase 7 pro bowl seasons.

        2. Here’s some facts from and ESPN article that you might want to consider before writing Willis.

          Willis’ 733 tackles since his rookie season of 2007 are the most in the NFL in that time frame.

          Willis, meanwhile, had never played fewer than 13 games in a season, but will have appeared in only six this season. He has a sizeable lead in solo tackles since 2007, his 733 followed by Karlos Dansby (677) and Chad Greenway (640).

          Plus, Willis’ streak of seven straight Pro Bowls to begin his career is likely to end. And only two other defensive players since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger have begun their respective careers with longer such streaks. Hall of Fame linebackers Lawrence Taylor and Derrick Thomas went 10 and nine straight years, respectively, to start their careers, from 1981 through 1990 and 1989 through 1997.

          That puts him in pretty rare company and lets see if Bowman can replicate it. Borland is playing well but he’s got 7 years of the best tacking production in the NFL to make up for.

    3. Not so, my friend. Chris will never have PW’s range or coverage abilities, but I still like him a lot.

      1. @Bro Tuna

        100% right on Willis’ range and coverage; also thanks for remembering my old Oregon roomie DW

  6. It appears that Willis’ toe problem has been brewing for years. Hopefully it will now get fully fixed.

  7. A shout out to all Vets out there; appreciate you.
    We’re having the Vets Day Parade in Petaluma today. If you couldn’t pick out the Nam Vets by our age, you could spot us by the look in our eyes when the Hueys fly overhead. Won’t ever forget that sound.

    1. Bro, Nice that you were able to take part in Veterans Day festivities and get the recognition you deserve. I had several buddies from that time tell me the same thing concerning the sound of the Hueys.

      I served during that time but never left the US of A stayed stateside. So when people ask me if I am a Vietnam Vet I say no, I am a Vietnam Era Vet. I save the Vietnam Vet moniker for those who really had the tough time serving in country. There is a big difference.

      1. Thanks, Al. Service is service and is appreciated. There are all sorts of degrees of it.
        I was a Huey door gunner. In the words of Chuck Yeager: got shot at, shot up, and shot down. Bidnez was good; way too good.
        But make no mistake. Nobody served like the grunts served. Their lives were Hell even in between the fireworks. They thought my job was “Gravy.”

      2. Niner Al, Brotha, all other Veterans:

        Sorry for being late with this, but thank you for your service.

        1. Thanks Claude. It’s never too late but the kudo’s really go to guys like Brother Tuna.
          As a side note I am very proud of the way everyone is supporting our troops today. Brother Tuna can back me on this… The support for the troops during and after Nam was shameful.

    2. A sad day too in Petaluma at the Vets Parade. Herb Louten, one of Sonoma County’s
      last surviving Pearl Harbor veterans, died sitting in a chair at his home this morning
      waiting to be taken to the parade by his son. He was 97. The decorated car that in which he was to be seated was still driven in the parade in tribute to his passing and his participation in North Bay veteran activities for years and years.

  8. I wonder what Alphonso has been doing in the meantime? What do on-the-fringe free agents out of the game do to make $$$ and keep in shape? and they other running back that was terrific and we lost — I think to the Browns. What is he up to? He was so good I forgot his name.

    In other news… woman at work comes into the office with a cold. “Oh, don’t worry, I took plenty of vitamin C,” she says. Now five of us have a cold including the old Ghost. Sucks cause I get a cold once in a decade and today was a holiday…

  9. The season is on Bowmaans knee. Hes still feeling pain in it. Unless this Offense goes ape *hit and starts lighting it up any Superbowl talk is done. I dont think Bowman will be playing this season either. Another wasted year. I guess we will find out this week.

  10. MD, no such thing as a “wasted year.” Everyone is doing their best, regardless of what some think. I support the team, win or lose. Hope they win, hate to see them lose… I’m sure you feel the same way.

    1. A wasted year because this talent and core aren’t going to be here long. Super Bowl is the only thing this team should achieve. Anything less is a wasted year. A lockdown/shutdown defense is the ONLY way they win it all. The offense is a one half highlight reel and a one half embarrassment.

  11. I wonder if Borland’s success had anything to do with this decision. Seems like this is the kind of thing they probably knew they were going to have to operate on earlier but were holding out in case they needed him to try and play this year. With Borland playing well it gave them the security to go ahead and pull the plug on Patrick for the rest of the season.

  12. Cooky thought I’ve been tossing around since the Bowman injury last season… Brooks at MLB puts the best talent on the field.

    I admit I’m not thinking in real world terms. Teams just don’t “put so-and-so at position x” … but Brooks at MLB keeps the Aldon+Lynch pass rush tandem in tact and puts a thumper of a run stopper (and spot blitzer) on the field.

    Fangio has experimented with it before. Last year Brooks stuffed a run in a goal line stand in playoffs at MLB, and he had a great “ooo hit” from the OLB spit vs Denver the other week (one of the few 49er highlights).

    A year or two back, Famgio’s also put Brooks at MLB in pass situations… from a 3 point stance, starting about 2 yards from the line.

    Imagine in obvious pass situations Aldon/Lynch from the outside, Justin in his usual spot, and Brooks in a 3-point about 2 yards over offenses right A or B gap.

    1. Skuta can probably play ILB too. We have good options. Better than what Seattle does behind Mebane.

  13. Is it just me or should we be pissed Willis didn’t take care of this nagging injury in the off season? How could he say he’s had it for several years and not fix it????

    1. Is it a similar injury to Dial’s. My point is if so look how long surgery kept Dial off the field and on IR.

      1. Maybe he was faced with a choice where he could play through it or miss huge playing time. His gamble didn’t pay off.

  14. oneniner November 11, 2014 at 11:06 am
    ninerMdoron, I am never away – except only when I am with your mom

    Again real tough talk over the internet. I’ve seen stains on mattresses worth more than you. You’re a coward and have no respect for moms. What’s new? I hope 1 day I get to meet you in person onelame. You and the racist prime stay classy. Mary and 77 love ya. I don’t care if I look bad on here. I’m calling you out to come say this to my face. Prime I’m also callin you out to call me a spick to my face. Let’s finish this internet tough guy talk and see how much of a man you two really are. What’s good?

  15. I think they should put Bowman on the shelf. No need to rush back and over do. Niners should have a yoga coached following Aldon Smith every where. He needs to makes sure he stay stretched. Season is in full swing. We don’t need him over doing it pulling a hamstring.

  16. Did anyone, but me, notice the last fieldgoal made to win lst wks game looked like a fireworks rocket gone bad? What’s up with that? It had a definit twist to the right to it.

    1. It’s obvious that Dawson has grown tired of hearing everyone talking about Andy Lee’s knuckle punt so he decided to bust out his own trick, the knuckle field goal.

    2. If he could do that with his arm, he could make the starting rotation for the SF Giants. Mad Bum has nothing on him!

  17. @Jeeps

    I saw that, but thought it was just a blip on the TV…Thanks for reenforcing the fact that my eyes still work…

  18. The 49ers 2014 draft is on its way to being mentioned alongside their 1986 draft. Tremendous

    1. With Borland playing lights out the past two weeks, and Martin looking much improved last week, the 49ers are now getting significant production from 5 of their first 8 picks (Ward, Hyde, Borland, Martin and Lynch), 4 of which are now starters. Ellington and Johnson are providing smaller contributions, but have looked decent in small doses. That’s 7 of their first 8 picks providing some contribution.

      The only pick of their first 8 that hasn’t contributed is on IR – Brandon Thomas – and as a guy touted as a potential first rounder before his injury he could be a steal at the end of the 3rd. The other draft picks have all also been on various injured lists, though Millard and Ramsey are now back in practice. Will be interesting to see if those guys stick on the roster this season or go to IR after their 3 weeks are up.

      Regardless, you are absolutely right that this draft class is shaping up to be pretty special. Especially when you consider Stevie Johnson was also acquired during the draft.

  19. Thanks guys, for releiving me of the thought of site failure. That last kick has been bothering me for three days. Good to read some humor on this site.

    1. Yeah, that contributed yet a few more points on my already elevated blood pressure! A nano-second of ‘Oh no!’ and then ‘OK, whew’

  20. who will be the 49ers starting D to end the year??

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