San Francisco 49ers’ head coach Kyle Shanahan has been looking forward to the Week 12 matchup against the Los Angeles Rams for quite some time. His team is missing virtually all of its best players because of injuries, but there could be a light at the end of the tunnel.
After the loss to the New Orleans Saints, Shanahan said he was hopeful the Niners would get some reinforcements in time for the NFC West showdown in Los Angeles. The chances are increasing that he will get his wish.
Richard Sherman, Deebo Samuel, Raheem Mostert and Tevin Coleman are all on track to return against the Rams. Shanahan joined KNBR’s Murph and Mac Show and seemed optimistic that the four players could be in the lineup for Week 12:
“I know we’ve got a chance at all of them. They’re not all for sure, but it’s going in the right direction. It will be a big week of rehab for them. As long as we don’t have any setbacks, and they keep going like they are, it’s looking pretty good right now.
It would help a lot, that’s for sure. I keep trying to tell the guys, though, getting those guys back is going to help. It’s going to be a boost, but we can’t put everything on those guys. They haven’t played in a while.”
The rushing game has had one too many attempts where Jerick McKinnon runs for a yard. Jet finished the Saints game with just 33 yards on 18 carries, good for an average of 1.8 yards per attempt. JaMycal Hasty has shown flashes but doesn’t have the coaching staff’s confidence to be the every-down back.
Mostert and Coleman will provide a massive upgrade for the rushing attack. Mostert hasn’t suited up since the Week 6 over the Rams. He’s averaging 5.9 yards per attempt through four games this season. The veteran Coleman has only appeared in three games so far.
The 27-year-old went down with a knee injury in the Week 2 win against the New York Jets and proceeded to miss the next five games before briefly returning for three carries in the Week 8 loss to the Seattle Seahawks.
Samuel hasn’t been on the field since the 49ers blew out the New England Patriots nearly four months ago. The second-year receiver tweaked his hamstring but is on track to go after the BYE Week. Samuel will give San Francisco’s anemic passing offense a boost, joining rookie Brandon Aiyuk as its top two receivers.
We haven’t seen the veteran Sherman since hurting his calf in the season-opening loss to the Arizona Cardinals. It was initially diagnosed as a strain, but Sherman continued to experience pain in his leg, which has led to him missing nine-consecutive games. It will be interesting to see if his snap count will be limited after sitting out for such an extended period.
Getting all four of these guys back will immensely help the 49ers, but the big question mark remains at the quarterback position. Mostert, Coleman and Samuel give Shanahan and the offense three playmakers. Still, if Nick Mullens or C.J. Beathard play at a similar level to what we have seen since Jimmy Garoppolo went down, it won’t make much of a difference against a quality team like the Rams.
Which of the four players are you most excited to potentially have back in the lineup?