The first injury report for the Week 7 contest against the Tennessee Titans was released by the San Francisco 49ers. At Wednesday’s practice, the 49ers had four players who did not participate in practice because of injuries.
The 49ers players who sat out were G Alex Boone (shoulder), DT Glenn Dorsey (hamstring), DT Ray McDonald (biceps) and DT Justin Smith (shoulder). Of those four players, Dorsey’s injury is the most significant. If Dorsey continues not to participate at practice this week, he will likely be a game-time decision.
The reason why Dorsey’s injury is the most worrisome is because the Niners have already lost one starter at defensive tackle, Ian Williams, who is out for the season with a broken ankle. If Dorsey is not able to play on Sunday, Tony Jerod-Eddie will start in his place. The only other DT backup on the roster is Demarcus Dobbs, who has never started a game before.
Despite how well San Francisco’s defensive backups have played in place of injured starters, not having Dorsey against the Titans will limit the effectiveness of the run defense. Dorsey has done a decent job helping stop the run. During the 49ers’ three-game winning streak, the defense has given up an average of 84 rushing yards per game. Since Dorsey took over for Williams, he has recorded four tackles and two sacks.
There is some good news with the defensive tackles. Rookie defensive linemen Tank Carradine and Quinton Dial went through their first full practice on Wednesday. They were on the practice field as part of the scout team.
The Titans are ranked 17th in the league in total rushing offense and they average about 108 yards per game. Tennessee has a dynamic running back in Chris Johnson, but he is the type of runner who gets his yards by rushing to the outside. So Dorsey may not be called on much to stop the run other than to plug running lanes in the middle of the line. But don’t expect Johnson to run wild over the 49ers. With inside linebackers NaVorro Bowman and Patrick Willis’ speed and vision, they will cut off Johnson at the line of scrimmage before he is able to run for a big gain.
Hearing the news that a defensive tackle was injured or held out of practice is becoming commonplace for Niner fans. So far the injuries have not limited the defense. But if Dorsey or any of the defensive tackles have to miss games because of injuries, the Niners front office will be hitting the free-agent market to find help and depth.
Here is the full injury report for both teams from Wednesday’s practice:
49ers injury report
Out (definitely will not play): WR Quinton Patton (foot)
Did not participate in practice: G Alex Boone (shoulder), DT Glenn Dorsey (hamstring), DT Ray McDonald (biceps), DT Justin Smith (shoulder)
Limited participation in practice: CB Tarell Brown (knee), OT Anthony Davis (shoulder), G Mike Iupati (stinger), CB Carlos Rogers (knee), LB Michael Wilhoite (quadricep, ankle)
Full participation in practice: TE Vernon Davis (hamstring), QB Colin Kaepernick (foot), S Eric Reid (hip, ankle), LB Patrick Willis (groin)
Titans injury report
Did not participate in practice: LB Moise Fokou (knee), LB Zaviar Gooden (hamstring), DE Derrick Morgan (shoulder), S Bernard Pollard (ankle), OT David Stewart (ankle)
Limited participation in practice: LB Patrick Bailey (hamstring), RB Shonn Greene (knee), QB Jake Locker (hip, knee)
Full participation in practice: RB Jackie Battle (neck), DE Lavar Edwards (shoulder), DT Sammie Lee (ankle), C Robert Turner (shoulder), CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson (hamstring)