Richard Sherman's status for 49ers vs. Saints unclear with knee injury

Richard Sherman's status for 49ers vs. Saints unclear with knee injury

Strong safety Jaquiski Tartt fractured his ribs Sunday in the 49ers’ loss to the Baltimore Ravens, coach Kyle Shanahan said Monday on a conference call with Bay Area reporters.

But Tartt could be back on the field this week, along with cornerback Richard Sherman (knee) and nose tackle D.J. Jones (ankle), who also left Sunday’s game due to injuries. Shanahan listed each of those players as "day-to-day."

Backup defensive lineman Jullian Taylor is expected to miss multiple games with an ligament injury to his elbow, Shanahan said.

The 49ers return to practice Wednesday in Bradenton, Florida, to begin preparations to face the New Orleans Saints in Week 14.

Second-year player Marcell Harris replaced Tartt and played the final 28 snaps of the team's 20-17 loss. Harris had one of the team's big plays when he took the ball away from Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson on a running play.

Tartt's availability will be determined by how much pain he can tolerate.

"We’ll see how it reacts this week, but those are always real painful things and each one’s a little bit different for each person, so we’ll see how it goes," Shanahan said.

Sherman's availability for Sunday's game at New Orleans also is in question.

Following the game, Sherman jokingly blamed his age and NFL experience for the injury that forced him out of the game for a brief period of time in the second half.

“Yeah, old man, you know?” he said. “Nine years.”

Sherman was moving very gingerly after the game. Shanahan said he probably would already rule out Sherman from playing against the Saints, but he has a history of recovering quickly from injuries.

"He’s a guy that I would never rule out," Shanahan said. "I understand though. I see him walking the way you guys did, too. A normal person I probably would rule out just by the eye test, but you can never rule those type of guys out. They usually find a way to get there and as long as they show us enough then you usually give those guys an opportunity.

"That’s also why we’ve got to make sure that he’s good. Sometimes we’ve got to make tough decisions to protect them from themselves.”

If Sherman is unable to play, the 49ers will start Ahkello Witherspoon and Emmanuel Moseley at the cornerback positions.

[RELATED: Ravens vow to be ready for 49ers in Super Bowl rematch]

Four players missed Sunday’s game due to injuries, and Shanahan said he hopes to have three of those players – left tackle Joe Staley (finger), running back Matt Breida (ankle) and edge rusher Dee Ford (hamstring) -- back in action this week.

Backup wide receiver Dante Pettis (knee) is likely to miss at least another week, Shanahan said.

Jimmy Garoppolo 'really good' but not elite, analyst Chris Simms says

Jimmy Garoppolo 'really good' but not elite, analyst Chris Simms says

Is your quarterback elite? Well, if you're a fan of the 49ers then no -- at least according to Chris Simms.

The NBC Sports football analyst couldn't confidently put Jimmy Garoppolo in the elite category, but still had plenty of praise toward him, especially knowing he plans on leading the 49ers to the Super Bowl.

"I think there's some quarterbacks in football right now: Russell Wilson, Aaron Rodgers, DeShaun Watson, Patrick Mahomes -- they kind of stand alone," Simms said.

After that handful of quarterbacks, Simms highlights a group of "good," a squad that he considers Jimmy G to be a part of. Plus, Garoppolo has a lot of "good" surrounding him.

The elite talents of tight end George Kittle are something that shouldn't be argued -- unless you're not sure if he's a decent blocker or not. Ahem, Doug Gottlieb.

"That's all you need to win a Super Bowl," Simms added.

The consensus around G's eliteness is that he's not elite, but he's not bad, but he's good enough.

[RELATED: NFC offensive consultant on Jimmy G's eliteness

Got all of that?

His throwing abilities have been talked about, but once again the word "elite" was not mentioned.

49ers tackle Joe Staley doesn't have looming retirement on his mind


49ers tackle Joe Staley doesn't have looming retirement on his mind

A lot of times for athletes, it's not up to them whether or not they want to retire -- it's up to their body. For 49ers tackle Joe Staley, it's really no different.

"I like to think that I can continue to play football for as long as they'll have me," Staley said in an interview with 95.7 The Game on Thursday. "And that's my mindset. I've never thought about when an end is going to be."

The 35-year-old signed a two-year contract extension with San Francisco in June which ultimately means he could spend the entirety of his NFL career as a member of the 49ers. And while that seems like a long time, he's still soaking up the everyday grind of his job even with the setbacks he's faced this season.

"The challenges of this season have been different than seasons past," he said. "I love the adverse situations and you kind of learn a lot about yourself -- how you respond and challenge yourself daily with different goals ... "

Staley sustained a fractured left fibula earlier in the season during the Week 2 matchup against the Bengals and with a smile tried to remain positive but admitted: "it sucks." He was emotional after the injury but said that had a lot to do with how special the team was and the guys he was surrounded by.

Still, you can't fake the passion the six-time Pro Bowler brings to the 49ers and it appears you would have to pry the game away from his hands if you anticipate him hanging up his cleats any time soon.

[RELATED: How Jimmy G can enter record books in 49ers-Falcons]

"That love for the game is still there, burning," Staley said.

He finished the statement saying he doesn't have an honest answer as to just how much football is left in his body, but it's not something he's concentrating on at the moment.