The 49ers may be banged up ahead of Monday Night Football, but the Vikings are also going to be shorthanded and will miss these two big names.
A wise football personality once said, "It's not necessarily which teams you play any given season, it's when you play them that matters."
Whoever that football analyst was deserves to be remembered (perhaps someone out there does), and it certainly could apply to both the San Francisco 49ers and their Week 7 opponent, the Minnesota Vikings, who are scheduled to duke it out in prime time on Monday Night Football.
Particularly because both are squaring off against each other at a time when injuries to key players are major factors.
Minnesota is likely crossing its fingers that the Niners' trio of significant injuries on offense -- left tackle Trent Williams (ankle), wide receiver Deebo Samuel (shoulder) and running back Christian McCaffrey (oblique) -- are all unable to play after suffering those injuries during San Francisco's first loss of the season last Sunday against the Cleveland Browns.
There's cautious optimism for all three to be ready for Monday's game, although each of them missed the first two days of practice.
That said, the Vikings are dealing with their share of injuries, too, and there are two well-known players in particular who won't be suiting up against the 49ers at all.
Vikings will be without Justin Jefferson, Marcus Davenport vs. 49ers on Monday night
While Williams, Samuel and McCaffrey will all likely be listed as questionable for the contest, at best, two star Minnesota players are guaranteed to be out, All-Pro wide receiver Justin Jefferson and edge Marcus Davenport.
Jefferson, who has been a Pro Bowler each of his first three years in the league and led the NFL with 128 receptions and 1,809 receiving yards a season ago, landed on injured reserve with a hamstring injury and will be out four to six weeks after appearing in the Vikings' first five games of 2023.
Davenport, meanwhile, suffered a high-ankle sprain and has appeared in just four games this year, too, prior to landing on injured reserve earlier this week.
The Niners have had some trouble guarding against pass-rushers this season, particularly on the right side of their offensive line. Not having to face Davenport, who already picked up two sacks this year prior to getting hurt, is definitely a boost for San Francisco.
And few can adequately guard Jefferson well enough. He was already up to 571 yards and three touchdowns before his injury.
The 49ers and Vikings kick off on Monday, Oct. 23 at 8:15 p.m. from US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.