The San Francisco 49ers have one thing going for them heading into Sunday's game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- aside from the fact that they have more wins, better players, better coaches and all of that, of course -- is that the 49ers are healthy. Tampa Bay is pretty healthy as well, but I said it's "one thing going for them" and not an advantage like those other things!
But anyway, the 49ers are getting healthy. In fact, each and every player on the 53-man roster practiced this week. There are some issues, of course. Offensive guard Mike Iupati has missed three games with a partially torn MCL in his left knee, but he took part in practice twice, in a limited capacity.
Iupati is officially questionable for Sunday's game. Getting him back would be big -- though I do believe Adam Snyder has been serviceable as a fill-in -- especially when it comes to the run game. I'm a little skeptical that he'll be returning, but the point remains: the 49ers are getting healthy.
For a team that prides itself on physical play above all else, being healthy at Week 15 in the regular season is huge. One of the biggest reasons teams fall apart in the playoffs is injuries and a gassed team. There's nothing worse than a team being too short on manpower to finish a game.
The jury is still out on whether or not the 49ers will make it through the rest of the season unscathed. But I think it's safe to say the absolute most important thing for Sunday's game against Tampa Bay is simple: no new injuries, stay healthy and, if possible, win.
Is that too much to ask?