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49ers injured reserve list loaded with talent, cash

The San Francisco 49ers have suffered numerous big injuries in 2014. We take a look at the names on IR, and how the team has reverted to the mean.

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The San Francisco 49ers have dealt with numerous injuries this season, and while not all can be considered reasons for the 49ers struggles, it certainly has not helped matters. The folks at Spotrac keep a running tally of players on injured reserve, and how much salary is involved. This does not provide a complete picture of an injury situation, but it is an interesting angle.

The 49ers have 15 players currently on injured reserve. According to Spotrac, the 15 players total $23,983,230 in salary. The 49ers rank eighth in the NFL in salary on injured reserve, and third in total number of players. This does not factor in PUP and NFI players, nor players that have suffered extensive injuries throughout the season.

The 49ers injured reserve list is as follows:

CB Kenneth Acker
LB NaVorro Bowman
TE Derek Carrier
TE Garrett Celek
CB Chris Cook
DT Glenn Dorsey
OG Fou Fonoti
RB Kendall Hunter
WR Chuck Jacobs
C Daniel Kilgore
TE Vance McDonald
WR Kassim Osgood
DB Jimmie Ward
NT Ian Williams
LB Patrick Willis

The 49ers also have DT Kaleb Ramsey on the PUP list, and FB Trey Millard, CB Keith Reaser and OG Brandon Thomas on the NFI list.

Beyond that however, the 49ers have had an extensive array of players dealing with injuries for sizable chunks of the season. After the season officially wraps, we'll have a full list of injuries throughout the season. It will look something like this (although I'm open to suggestions for other formats). Among others, we have seen Tramaine Brock effectively miss all but 1 1/2 games, and Anthony Davis has missed most of the season with a variety of injuries.

Even when we have that full list, we might still only learn the full story in stops and starts. For example, we are only now learning the extent of Stevie Johnson's knee injury. According to Johnson, he suffered a knee injury in Week 7 against the Denver Broncos. He tried to work back from it, but eventually ended up on the injury report in Week 14, and sat out Week 15. We know players play through injuries, and they are not always showing up on the injury report, but this is just one more example of why we'll never know exactly what the true nature of the injury report is.

The 49ers went through a great run of health the first two years of the Jim Harbaugh era. In 2013, we saw the tide start to turn significantly. In 2011, the 49ers ranked No. 8 in Football Outsiders' Adjusted Games Lost stat. In 2012, they ranked No. 1, and in 2013, they ranked No. 23. I cannot imagine them improving this year. My guess is they rank in the bottom five in the league. It has been a rough year on the injury front as they effectively have reverted to the mean in a nasty way.