SANTA CLARA — On Thursday, Arik Armstead revealed that he will be back on the field for the 49ers' matchup with the Miami Dolphins on Sunday at Levi’s Stadium.
The defensive lineman hasn’t played since Week 4 when he was on the field for 30 snaps in the club’s win over the Los Angeles Rams. Armstead had been dealing with plantar fasciitis since the beginning of the season but in the win over the Rams, suffered a hairline fracture in his ankle that has kept him out for the past seven contests.
“I’m excited just to get back regardless of who we are playing,” Armstead said. “I missed a lot of time. It’s going to be a fun game, high-powered offense. A lot of eyes are going to be on this game, two top teams in the league so it’s going to be a lot of fun playing in this one. I'll be out there."
Defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans has been pleased with the performance of Kevin Givens, Hassan Ridgeway and Kerry Hyder who have played in Armstead’s absence on the interior of the defensive line, but was very happy to have his defensive tackle back in the mix.
“It’s good to have Armstead back out at practice,” Ryans said. “It’s just good to see him, what he’s battled through to get back. It’s been a long road for him, so it’s just good to have him back out there and if we can have him on Sunday, of course, that’s a plus for us.
“If we get an All-Pro player who can help our defense that would be a huge lift for us, so I’m excited for Armstead and just him working his way back in.”
Armstead has been impressed with how his position group has been playing in his absence, and can’t wait to make his return. The Oregon product had not missed a game since 2017 prior to this season.
“They’ve been doing an excellent job, playing hard in the run game, getting good pressure,” Armstead said. “Definitely proud of them and excited to take the field again with them. Excited to get back out there.”
There is a lot of media attention regarding how much each team knows one another. Armstead will be on the field tackling former teammates in running backs Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson Jr. Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel might know the 49ers' defense better than anyone in the NFL outside of Shanahan himself.
“I’m sure they will have some stuff schemed up for our front and what we do,” Armstead said. “It will be a little bit of a chess match early on, and then midway through the game it’s just going to be football.”