Kyle Shanahan confirmed on Monday that Deebo Samuel had a setback in his recovery from a Jones fracture in his foot.
“Usually after one day after being sore, we thought it was just because he worked it hard,” Shanahan said. “But when that got worse each day and not better, we knew it ended up being a little bit of a setback. That’s why we ended up putting him on IR.”
The 2020 NFL season has been unprecedented for many reasons. The rules for how a team can use the injured reserve list have been changed, which is why the timing for Samuel’s designation occurred when it did.
Originally, the 49ers were informed they were not able to put the second-year receiver on IR because his injury happened prior to the start of training camp. But since Samuel’s injury now has had a setback, they were allowed to utilize the three-week IR list. The 49ers needed to make the move immediately in order for Sunday’s game to count towards the three.
Shanahan confirmed the plan still is to have Samuel back for Week 4 against the Philadelphia Eagles, but the team will be careful so as to not put the remainder of the receiver's season in jeopardy.
"Really hoping to get him back by the Eagles game, but we got to see how this heals and how it goes right now,” Shanahan said.
Samuel was the team’s most productive wide receiver as a rookie last season, catching 57 of his 81 targets for 802 yards and three touchdowns. He also ran the ball 14 times for 159 yards and three touchdowns.
Shanahan and Samuel both are itching for him to come back after the 49ers' offense struggled in their 24-20 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. There were only two completions to wide receivers for a total of 20 yards.