49ers Notes: George Kittle on Track to Play against Philadelphia Eagles
Bad news for the Eagles.
49ers tight end George Kittle is full go for practice Wednesday afternoon, according to head coach Kyle Shanahan. Meaning Kittle is on track to play Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles after missing the past two games with a sprained MCL he suffered Week 1 against the Arizona Cardinals.
Kittle seemed on track to play last Sunday against the New York Giants -- he was a limited participant during the practices leading up to the game. And Shanahan said Kittle would be a game-time decision against the Giants. But the 49ers ruled him out Friday afternoon. Perhaps they were being cautious with their best player on a playing surface that the previous week had torn the ACLs of two 49ers -- Nick Bosa and Solomon Thomas.
Now Kittle is a full participant in practice. So barring any setbacks, he should play Sunday and improve an offense that currently ranks 11th in points scored and 12th in rushing yards.
“We definitely need to do better,” Shanahan said on Wednesday. “I thought we had a chance to run for a lot of yards against the Jets and I thought we missed a couple, got a couple called back and had way too many negatives. Last week against the Giants, they did some fronts that caught us off guard a bit that coaching-wise we didn’t put the guys through. Sometimes they had six bigs on the line of scrimmage and they had a pretty good defensive front. I know we could have done better, which I challenged the O-line with. I challenged everybody with. But I also think it’s extremely important we threw the ball well too, because you want to attack the weaknesses of defenses. When people put their strength into stopping the run, you better make them pay in the pass. Fortunately we were able to do that against the Giants. We should have ran it better versus the Jets.”
Additional 49ers notes:
--The 49ers will place Dee Ford (back) and Jordan Reed (knee) on the Injured Reserve List this week. Both will be eligible to return in three weeks.
--Shanahan said Jimmy Garoppolo could play Sunday against the Eagles if he’s healthy enough to participate in one live practice session this week. He has a high-ankle sprain. He will not practice Wednesday. Neither will Raheem Mostert (knee) or Dre Greenlaw (thigh).
--Shanahan seems to have a full-grown man crush on Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz. Here’s what Shanahan said about Wentz on Wednesday: “He’s one of the better quarterbacks in this league. He was the best player in the league the year they won the Super Bowl and I think he has done a lot of good things since. I know his numbers aren’t great this year and I know a lot of people are saying things about him, but when I watch the film I see Carson Wentz. He’s a guy who can make a lot of plays. He’s very hard to take down. He has a strong arm. He competes as much as anyone in this league. I have a ton of respect for him. He’s a hell of a quarterback and I know how this league feels about him.”