The San Francisco 49ers dealt with a swarm of injuries in their preseason opener Thursday. But that leads to increased looks for other players on the roster, and these five stand to benefit the most.
Injuries are a major factor for every NFL team both during training camp and the regular season, and the San Francisco 49ers are no different.
It’s just the 2018 preseason hasn’t been too kind to the red and gold. And just after one game too.
San Francisco ended up losing a number of players during its exhibition opener versus the Dallas Cowboys last Thursday. And in addition to injuries before and since, the Niners’ current injury list has grown quite lengthy (h/t Niners Wire’s Chris Biderman):
- TE George Kittle (shoulder)
- RB Matt Breida (shoulder)
- DT Arik Armstead (hamstring)
- RB Jerick McKinnon (calf)
- CB K’Waun Williams (ankle)
- LB Malcolm Smith (hamstring)
- OT Garry Gilliam (concussion)
- DE Solomon Thomas (concussion)
- LB Eli Harold (knee)
- EDGE Jeremiah Attaochu (groin)
- WR Max McCaffrey (foot)
- TE Cole Wick (knee)
- LB Brock Coyle (hip)
- LB Fred Warner (chest)
Cornerback Richard Sherman (hamstring) and offensive guard Joshua Garnett (knee) both returned to practice Monday, which is good, although the long list of injuries forced the Niners to make some moves.
Namely bringing aboard veteran running back Alfred Morris to alleviate the shortage at that position.
While any injury can derail a team’s chances, they also open up opportunity. And the Niners surely have some beneficiaries from some of these injuries suffered throughout training camp. With most depth players squarely on the roster bubble heading towards Week 1, the chance to see some added reps in practice and preseason games is valuable.
Here are five 49ers who stand to benefit the most from the long list of injuries San Francisco is dealing with.