The 49ers might have lost more than just the game in Seattle on Sunday.
An already long list of players who are out due to injury just got longer after five players left the 49ers’ 37-27 loss to the Seahawks and did not return. Jimmy Garoppolo (ankle), George Kittle (foot) Tevin Coleman (knee), Azeez Al-Shaair (hamstring) and Dante Pettis (shoulder) all sustained injuries severe enough to keep them off the field.
Coleman left the game in the first quarter after he was seen limping on the sidelines. After the game, coach Kyle Shanahan shared that the running back re-injured the same knee that had kept him out since Week 2. Coleman attempted to go back into the game for one play, but then did not continue.
If Coleman is not able to play going forward, the team may be forced to promote second-year back Austin Walter to the active 53-man roster. Jerick McKinnon and JaMychal Hasty are the only healthy players in a once very deep running backs room.
The team does not have the luxury of having a full week to nurse players back to health, as they host the Green Bay Packers on "Thursday Night Football" in Week 9. COVID-19 testing protocols would prevent the 49ers from being able to work out and bring in anyone outside the club in time for a game by Thursday’s kickoff.
One position where the 49ers have a little depth is at quarterback. Just as it seemed Garoppolo was moving past the ankle injury he sustained in Week 2, he twisted it awkwardly while being sacked in the third quarter.
After Garoppolo tested out the ankle on the sidelines, Shanahan made the call to replace the franchise quarterback with backup Nick Mullens. How Garoppolo’s ankle feels after returning to Santa Clara will determine if Mullens will become the starter vs. Green Bay on a short week.
The biggest scare of the night was the injury to Kittle, the 49ers All-Pro tight end. While fighting for a first down, Kittle sustained an injury that at first was thought to be to his ankle. Later, it was determined that the injury was to his foot.
Preliminary tests and X-rays of Kittle’s foot revealed that nothing is broken, but Shanahan said that his star tight end will undergo further testing, including an MRI, on Monday when the team returns to Santa Clara.
The little bit of good news for the 49ers was that they dodged a bullet with Fred Warner, who laid on the field stunned after tackling Seahawks running back DeeJay Dallas in the third quarter. The linebacker sustained a stinger and returned to finish the game a few plays later.