Will Justin Smith play in the playoffs? Harbaugh: “You watch the strength and how that comes back.”

SANTA CLARA – Justin Smith has missed the last two-and-a-half games with a partially torn triceps tendon. Jim Harbaugh was asked if he expects Smith to heal enough during the bye week to play in the playoffs. Here’s what Harbaugh said.

Q: How much will the Bye help Justin Smith?

HARBAUGH: You watch the strength and how that comes back. If he can play, do his job, defend himself and be effective – he’s made progress each week, significant progress, so hopeful. That would be my thought.

Q: Will it be his call if he feels like he’s ready?

HARBAUGH: Yeah. Nobody knows their body like the player himself, but also the doctors.

Q: Do you think he’ll probably feel like he’s ready?

HARBAUGH: I’m hopeful.

Q: How did Ricky Jean Francois do in place of Justin Smith against the Cardinals?

HARBAUGH: He did a good job. He’s done a nice job filling in. He’s always been a solid player. Ray (McDonald) had a good game as well.

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