Notes: 49ers' decisions on Hyde, Boldin will come Sunday morning


Notes: 49ers' decisions on Hyde, Boldin will come Sunday morning

SANTA CLARA – Coach Jim Tomsula probably will not know if running back Carlos Hyde and wide receiver Anquan Boldin will be available against the St. Louis Rams until 90 minutes before Sunday’s kickoff.

“The way we go into the week is we’re expecting it (medical decision) to go all the way up to game time,” Tomsula said on Friday. “That’s just the way we plan.”

Hyde has not seen any practice time this week due to a stress fracture in his left foot. Tomsula said Hyde has all of his assignments and knows the game plan. Now, it’s just a matter of him being physically able to play.

Hyde has a stress fracture on the outside of his foot, a source said. The only way the injury will heal is through rest or surgery. He can continue to play through the pain, but would likely require surgery after the season.

“With him, the medical staff is a major cog in that wheel,” Tomsula said of the decision of whether Hyde plays.

Hyde has rushed for 95 yards on 32 attempts in the two games since appearing on the 49ers’ injury report with the foot injury. He ranks ninth in the NFL with 470 yards rushing on 115 rushing attempts.

Boldin has been nursing a hamstring issue since earlier in the season. He felt the leg tightening up during practice on Thursday and was removed from the session.

“We’re going to make sure we’re on the safe side with that,” Tomsula said of Boldin, who leads the 49ers with 31 catches for 372 yards and two touchdowns.

Veteran Jerome Simpson, who was activated last Friday off the NFL’s reserve/suspended list, is eligible to make his season debut. But Tomsula said no decision has yet been made whether Simpson will suit up for Sunday’s game.

[RELATED: Bush takes over 49ers' return chores from Hayne]

---When asked if Reggie Bush was the 49ers’ No. 1 punt returner, Tomsula answered, “Yeah, we’ve got a few guys we’re going through there. Reggie is definitely is one of those guys.”

Bush replaced rookie Jarryd Hayne in that role in last week’s game against the Seattle Seahawks. Hayne handled the punt-return chores for the first six games. He was inactive last week.

---Defensive lineman Tony Jerod-Eddie returned to the team on Friday after dealing with a family matter. He will be available to play in Sunday’s game.

Jimmy Garoppolo ranked 19th-best QB by NFL coaches, execs due to health


Jimmy Garoppolo ranked 19th-best QB by NFL coaches, execs due to health

When it comes to criticisms of 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, they almost always seem to fall into one of two categories: his health and his experience.

It makes sense. Garoppolo has made just 10 career NFL starts, with eight of those coming in a San Francisco uniform. Only three of those starts came last season, and one was cut short after he suffered a torn ACL in a Week 3 loss to the Chiefs.

So when The Athletic's Mike Sando on Monday released his quarterback tiers survey -- which included input from 55 anonymous coaches and executives ranking the QBs into five tiers -- the discussion surrounding Garoppolo came as no surprise.

Garoppolo was ranked the No. 19 overall quarterback in the NFL, firmly in Tier 3 between Jacksonville's Nick Foles and Oakland's Derek Carr. Garoppolo was ranked in the bottom of Tier 2 a year ago, and the drop can be attributed to his latest injury. Still, though, voters remain optimistic that Garoppolo will be able to fully realize his potential.

"He is really accurate, he is smart and he is athletic, but he hasn’t played a lot of football, and you see it at times,” one GM said. “I just think he’s got everything if he can stay healthy. It sounds like he will have a better cast this year, and he’s got the coach."

[RELATED: Harbaugh credits Shanahan's offensive creativity with 49ers]

The better cast being referred to includes running back Tevin Coleman, as well as two wide receivers selected within the first three rounds of the 2019 NFL Draft. If Garoppolo can remain healthy enough to utilize it, voters believe he's destined to put together a great season.

"Injury does not mean he is worse,” a quarterbacks coach said. “His skills are the same. He needs to stay healthy and all those things will show."

Why 49ers will win NFC West this season, according to USA Today writer

Why 49ers will win NFC West this season, according to USA Today writer

The 49ers have won 10 games under head coach Kyle Shanahan in the past two seasons combined. Could they win that many games this season alone? 

USA Today's Nate Davis seems to think so

Davis not only has the 49ers winning 10 games and losing six, but also winning the NFC West. Here is his explanation:

"Recovered QB Jimmy Garoppolo may have just one premier weapon (TE George Kittle) but has plenty of capable options to leverage in Kyle Shanahan's scheme. Should be a joy to watch healthy group, which has consistently fought hard and remained highly capable despite dire circumstances of past two years."

With a healthy Garoppolo and the Rams suffering a Super Bowl hangover, Davis believes in the 49ers. Not that much, though. He has San Francisco (the No. 4 seed) losing to Chicago (the No. 5 seed) in the NFC Wild Card round. 

The 49ers haven't reached the playoffs since 2013 when they lost to the Seahawks in the NFC Championship Game. Since then, they've fired three head coaches -- Jim Harbaugh, Jim Tomsula and Chip Kelly -- and amassed a 25-55 record in the regular season. 

But the 49ers have a revamped roster, even outside of Garoppolo's health.

They added weapons through free agency and the NFL draft. General manager John Lynch and Co. gave Jimmy G players like running back Tevin Coleman plus receivers Deebo Samuel, Jalen Hurd and Jordan Matthews. On defense, they brought in edge rusher Dee Ford, defensive end Nick Bosa and linebacker Kwon Alexander, among others. 

[RELATED: Five bold predictions for 49ers' upcoming season]

In the always competitive NFC West, 10 wins for the 49ers will feel like another Super Bowl victory in itself.