49ers

49ers 'have to reassess' Matt Breida's ankle after limited action vs. Rams

49ers 'have to reassess' Matt Breida's ankle after limited action vs. Rams

SANTA CLARA -- 49ers running back Matt Breida might have to get healthier before returning to the field. 

After the 49ers' close 33-30 loss to the Packers last week, Breida said he would have to be “in a wheelchair to not go.” He ended the evening in Green Bay with 14 carries for 61 yards.

It was a different story Sunday in the lopsided 39-10 loss to the Los Angeles Rams. On the first play, Breida aggravated his ankle injury and had to come out of the game. The team’s medical staff taped both of his ankles, and he returned. On his first carry after re-entering, Breida lost a fumble.

He finished the day with a modest five carries for 15 yards -- his lowest output of the season.

Coach Kyle Shanahan has been complementary of Breida’s toughness, but he realizes the team might have to take another look at the running back's effectiveness while he rehabs his injury. 

“That’s something we’ll have to look into hard,” Shanahan said. “It’s based off how he looks in practice. Breida’s done a very good job recovering throughout the week. He’s had very good practices making all the cuts and everything on Fridays and Saturdays. Obviously, that first play today, it went. When that happens on the first play, we want to see the film and see what happened.

"He was begging to come back in the game the second half and felt like he was good enough, too, but getting at what you’re talking about, that’s why we made that decision to keep him down. Hopefully he’ll heal up more this week. We’ll have to reassess it again.”

Breida reiterated his desire to play after the loss, but he'll do what’s best for him and the 49ers. 

“I want to go out there and play,” Breida said, “but at the same time, if I’m injured, and I can’t go on, it’s not the best thing for the team. I tried to keep on playing. I have to be smart and not hurt my team at the same time. If I can’t go out there and go 100 percent, I have to let the guys that can, do it.”

When asked what happened on that first play, Breida explained it wasn’t anything specific. He said he just aggravated the injury that has been nagging him for a few weeks. 

Potentially taking himself out of the game because of injury is not an easy thing for Breida to say or admit. 

“It’s extremely hard,” Breida said. “Like I said, I love this game and, you know, it’s extremely hard for me to say that to myself. But at the end of the day, I got to do what’s best for the team.” 
 
Raheem Mostert went in for the injured Breida, and finished as the 49ers' top back Sunday. He rushed for 59 yards on seven carries, and had four catches for 19 yards.

Mostert spoke highly of Breida’s toughness after the game. 

"Matt is a warrior,” Mostert said. “He fights. That’s what he does. So, I wouldn’t expect him to quit just yet, because he loves the fight, and you know, we’re all going to be behind him 110 percent, no matter what he’s going through.” 

49ers' Ahkello Witherspoon expected back in starting lineup vs. Packers

49ers' Ahkello Witherspoon expected back in starting lineup vs. Packers

SANTA CLARA – Cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon returned to action in Week 11 against the Arizona Cardinals following a seven-game absence due to foot and quadriceps injuries.

Witherspoon started the first three games of the season and will return to the starting lineup as early as Sunday night when the 49ers face the Green Bay Packers at Levi’s Stadium.

Emmanuel Moseley remained in the starting lineup against the Cardinals because the 49ers had a short week following the Monday night game against Seattle, coach Kyle Shanahan said.

“We weren’t going to throw Ahkello out there without covering a receiver at full speed (for the first time) in about seven weeks unless he could get three full days of practice in,” Shanahan said. “We walked through about 80-percent of our reps that week.

“Without getting the right amount of practice time in, it really wasn’t much of a decision.”

Witherspoon saw six snaps of action on Sunday when Moseley left the game briefly late in the third quarter due to cramps.

[RELATED: How 49ers' road ahead could be historically tough stretch]

Moseley, an undrafted second-year player from Tennessee, has been targeted 32 times and surrendered 19 catches for 248 yards with one touchdown and one interception with four pass breakups, according to Pro Football Focus.

Witherspoon got off to a great start through three games, allowing just six receptions on 19 targets for 148 yards with one touchdown and one interception and three passes defensed.

Deebo Samuel's insane catch in 49ers' win had Nate Burleson going nuts

Deebo Samuel's insane catch in 49ers' win had Nate Burleson going nuts

If 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel's incredible circus catch against the Cardinals on Sunday caused you to go crazy, you're not the only one.

Former NFL wide receiver and current NFL Network analyst Nate Burleson highlighted the catch in this week's edition of "Toe Drag Swag," and to say that 11-year veteran was impressed with the rookie was an understatement.

"Now this one is nasty," Burleson said. "Deebo Samuel. Don't forget about him. He goes up and gets this. It bounces off of the back pad, bounces off the helmet of [Patrick] Peterson and then he tracks the ball. Deebo Samuel is snatching footballs like the real Deebo in 'Friday' was snatching chains.

"But how 'bout that concentration, though? You're trying to catch it over the back of one of the best corners in the business. It bounces off his back, it bounces off his head and then you still have the awareness to get your feet down before you go out of bounds."

In case you need a refresher, here are a few slo-mo replays.

Burleson went on to shower the 2019 second-round pick with praise.

"Deebo Samuel, for a young player who is transitioning from position to position, has stepped up and is one the best targets that Jimmy Garoppolo has on this offense," Burleson said. "Look at this play again. Keeping his eyes on the ball the whole time, in between two defenders, and still gets his feet down for one of the best catches in the business."

[RELATED: Samuel makes history vs. Cardinals]

After catching 22 passes for 227 yards over the first seven games he played in this season, Samuel has broken out with 16 receptions for 246 yards combined the last two weeks. Garoppolo targeted the rookie wide receiver a total of 21 times against the Seahawks and Cardinals.

Samuel is starting to make a believer out of everyone, including Burleson.

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