Ray McDonald dealing with high ankle sprain injury, pessimistic about Sunday vs. Saints

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

49ers defensive tackle Ray McDonald suffered a high ankle sprain in the team's loss to Carolina. We break down his status as the team prepares for the Saints. New to Niners Nation? Sign up here and join the discussion!

The San Francisco 49ers face the New Orleans Saints this Sunday and they could be without defensive tackle Ray McDonald. The 49ers DT left Sunday's game with an ankle sprain, and it looks like it will be an issue in the short term. The media is chatting with players in the locker room, and this has come out:

The 49ers will release their first injury report of the week later today, and it's just about a lock we'll see McDonald as a DNP. The question at this point is whether he will be listed as questionable, doubtful or out when the final injury report comes out on Friday.

While I suspect McDonald has the pain tolerance to play through a high ankle sprain, I can't imagine that is advisable. The 49ers have Tony Jerod-Eddie and Demarcus Dobbs coming off solid performances against the Carolina Panthers, and the team has Quinton Dial and Tank Carradine available if needed. They are all young and have a lot of development in front of them, but they are all talented. TJE made the biggest impact last Sunday, but Dobbs was solid filling in for Justin Smith at times as well.

The bigger question is if this is Tank Carradine's opportunity to show some things. If McDonald can't play, he said Jerod-Eddie would get the start in his place. I suspect we would see some rotation between TJE and Tank, with Dobbs rotating in more to spell Justin Smith.

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