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Reuben Foster could practice Wednesday, status vs. Washington TBD

The 49ers’ first-round pick should begin practicing soon, but his return is still up in the air.

NFL: San Francisco 49ers at Minnesota Vikings Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

San Francisco 49ers rookie linebacker Reuben Foster is very close to returning from a high ankle sprain, and is expected to practice with the team on Wednesday, according to head coach Kyle Shanahan. He gave the update in his Monday press conference.

Though Foster should be returning to practice, his status for Sunday’s Week 6 game against Washington is very much up in the air. It will largely depend on how he responds in practice. It’s likely he’ll be a limited participant all week, and could even miss one of the sessions to be safe.

The nature of high ankle sprains mean his return was always a moving target. They could find that he’s 100 percent this week, and he’ll play against Washington. If I had to guess, Foster will not play but will practice at least two of the days.

Ray-Ray Armstrong had a miserable performance in relief of Foster when the injury first occurred, but he’s slowly improved the more he’s seen the field. Armstrong had his best game of the season against the Colts, allowing just 7 yards in coverage, snaring an interception and earning high marks from Pro Football Focus.

Foster is a hugely important aspect of the 49ers’ future, but there should be no rush in getting him back. The 49ers are winless and putting him at risk for further injury will help nobody.