49ers hit by injuries during offseason program, 18 players missing time

49ers hit by injuries during offseason program, 18 players missing time

SANTA CLARA – After two seasons in which the 49ers have been ravaged by injuries, the club is missing 18 players during the offseason program due to injuries.

“Just going off experience, this is the most time I’ve had with people missing OTAs,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said. “But we’ve been really healthy the last two OTAs, and it’s been the opposite in (training) camp.

“So maybe it’ll be the opposite this year. We’re not healthy in OTAs, which might be a good sign for training camp.”

First-round draft pick Nick Bosa was added to the list on Tuesday with a right hamstring injury. The severity of his injury is not known, but many other players are certain to sit out the remainder of the offseason program, which wraps up June 13.

Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo took 20 snaps Tuesday in 7-on-7 drills and completed 75 percent of his pass attempts. But he will be held out of all 11-on-11 drills during the offseason program as a precaution after sustaining a torn ACL in his left knee in Week 4.

“It’ll take him a while before he’s able to protect himself and react, and keep people away from his legs,” Shanahan said of Garoppolo.

Running backs Jerick McKinnon, Matt Breida and Raheem Mostert will not be available until training camp. McKinnon is returning from a torn ACL that wiped out his entire 2018 season. He is expected to be ready for the opening of training camp. Breida recently sustained a partially torn pectoral muscle in the weight room. 

Breida did not require surgery, Shanahan said.

“It’s frustrating for Breida because he can do just about everything,” Shanahan said. “He just has to avoid contact. He can’t be out there running with other people on the field.”

Mostert sustained a fractured forearm in Week 9 against the Raiders and had surgery to insert a plate.

“They had to re-do the exact same thing,” Shanahan said. “When it’s not growing back together the right way it’s better to just start it over. . . (It’s) not too big of a deal, it just added another month.”

Veteran tight end Garrett Celek, who sustained a concussion in Week 16 and was inactive for the season finale, has yet to be cleared from concussion protocol, Shanahan said. He is also experiencing problems with his back, which places his future in question.

[RELATED: How 49ers receivers will have different look this season]

“He can’t get cleared from that until training camp, so (we’re) going to have to be patient with him, too,” Shanahan said.

Linebacker Fred Warner recently underwent arthroscopic surgery to clean out his knee and will not participate in OTAs, Shanahan said. The club expects him to be cleared for the start of training camp.

Linebacker Kwon Alexander (knee), cornerback Jason Verrett (Achilles), center Weston Richburg (knee-quadriceps) and rookie receiver Jalen Hurd (knee) are among the players who are not practicing due to surgeries from injuries sustained last season.

Kyle Shanahan is 'doppelganger' of Bill Belichick, Colin Cowherd says

Kyle Shanahan is 'doppelganger' of Bill Belichick, Colin Cowherd says

There are a litany of great head coaches in the NFL today, but few are both as universally beloved by colleagues and as overlooked by fans and media members as 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan. The former Falcons offensive coordinator has fought an uphill battle since taking over prior to the 2017 season -- and has a 10-22 record to show for it. 

Colin Cowherd was recently discussing the NFL.com head coach rankings that were released yesterday, and he strongly disagreed with one particular selection.

"Shanahan, has a doppelganger in this league, it's called Belichick," Cowherd said. Bill Belichick is easily the most well-renowned head coach in the NFL and just came off of his sixth Super Bowl victory in February.

"Kyle Shanahan has an incredible career as a coordinator," the host of The Herd on FS1 explained. "Everywhere he's gone, He made Matt Schaub a pro bowler, he made Matt Ryan an MVP. Then he leaves, the teams aren't the same and the quarterbacks aren't the same. "

Cowherd pointed out some data on just how much better the 49ers have been with Jimmy Garoppolo on the field than when he's been off, but closed out his analysis with a strong take.

[RELATED: DeForest Buckner has big expectations for himself, 49ers in 2019 season]

"In two years, he will be a top-six coach."

With Shanahan and general manager John Lynch each having four years remaining on their contracts, 49ers fans can rest easy knowing they've got a very highly regarded head coach pacing the sidelines each week. The regular season opens Sept. 8 when San Francisco travels to Tampa Bay to face the Buccaneers. 

49ers, Raiders picked to be among most improved teams by NFL analyst

49ers, Raiders picked to be among most improved teams by NFL analyst

The 2018 NFL season was one every Bay Area fan would like to forget. Both the 49ers and Raiders ended the season with 4-12 records, as they each secured a top-five pick in the NFL draft.

NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah shared his predictions for the most improved organizations in 2019 and both the 49ers and Raiders made the cut.

The 49ers top Jeremiah's board with the promise of quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo being healthy for training camp and an offseason that saw them shore up an already strong defensive line group, signing Dee Ford to a long-term deal and drafting former Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa No. 2 overall in April's draft.

The Raiders, meanwhile, sit third in Jeremiah's rankings after making some of their own splashy moves over the NFL offseason. Oakland acquired All-Pro wide receiver Antonio Brown from the Steelers and also signed Vontaze Burfict, who was a Pro Bowler and second-team All-Pro with the Bengals in 2013.

[RELATED: 49ers' Kyle Shanahan ranked as 23rd-best veteran head coach by NFL.com]

It's hard to go anywhere but up for the Bay Area's NFL teams in 2019, but if Jeremiah's picks are accurate, there could be a lot more winning football coming to Northern California in the coming months.