SANTA CLARA, Calif .– As they enter a critical phase of two games against the NFC West Division’s top opponents, the San Francisco 49ers will welcome some key reinforcements.
When the Niners begin preparing for Sunday’s game against the Arizona Cardinals, they will meet George Kittle, kicker Robbie Gould and running back Jeff Wilson Jr. back on the training field.
According to San Francisco coach Kyle Shanahan, the Niners will open the training window on Wednesday for Kittle (calf), Gould (groin) and Wilson (knee), all of whom were injured. Once this window opens, the team has three weeks to activate the player for the 53-man roster.
While opening the practice window for Kittle, Gould, and Wilson is a step in the right direction, it doesn’t guarantee they’re ready to play against the Cardinals. Kittle and Gould should have a chance to return this week, though Wilson may take a little longer as he has been out with a ruptured meniscus since May.
“It will be his first time playing football in a long time so I don’t know if he will be ready this week, but at least we know he will be back soon, too,” Shanahan said.
The 49ers are also close to reclaiming linebacker Dre Greenlaw from a core muscle injury sustained in a Week 1 win against the Detroit Lions. Shanahan said the team hope Greenlaw’s training window will also open on Wednesday but are “not sure yet”.
Two other Niners who could return this week are Dee Ford and linebacker Azeez Al-Shaair, who both missed Sunday’s win against the Chicago Bears with concussions. They were close enough to play in that game that they traveled to Chicago with the team and Shanahan is optimistic they will be evacuated in time for Wednesday practice.
In less promising injury news, Niner’s running back Elijah Mitchell will be restricted in training on Wednesday as he struggles with a rib injury. And Free Safety Jimmie Ward’s status is even more meager as he recovers from what Shanahan called a Grade 1 quadriceps exercise.
“[It will be] a week or two, “Shanahan said of Ward’s injury.
Left tackle Trent Williams (ankle) and receiver Deebo Samuel (calf) managed to beat the Bears OK, but the Niners will continue to watch them this week, Shanahan said.