REPORT: D.J. Reed Tears Pectoral Muscle
Three 49ers down, and the team hasn’t even had a real practice yet this offseason.
First Deebo Samuel broke his foot working out. Then Richie James Jr. Broke his wrist working out. And now, cornerback D.J. Reed has torn his pectoral muscle working out -- he announced the injury on social media. Maybe the rest of the team should take it easy for a week or two.
The 49ers haven’t said how much time Reed likely will miss, but he almost certainly will sit out a few months and start the season on the Non-Football Injury List.
This injury is significant for a few reasons.
The 49ers secondary already was the thinnest, weakest position group on the team. And the 49ers didn’t draft any defensive backs this offseason. And Reed can play three positions -- corner, nickel and free safety. Plus he can return punts and kickoffs, too. He’s a key backup.
When starting nickelback K’Waun Williams missed Week 15 against the Falcons last season, Reed replaced him in the lineup and played 73 percent of the defensive snaps. So Reed is one injury to 29-year-old Williams away from becoming a major player in the 49ers defense.
But now Reed is out indefinitely. Linebacker Kwon Alexander suffered the same injury midway through last season and rushed to return for the playoffs, but didn’t play well in the postseason because he didn’t seem healthy. The 49ers shouldn’t and probably won’t rush back Reed.
So if K’waun Williams misses time, Emmanuel Moseley will have to move to nickel, meaning Ahkello Witherspoon would have to play corner. Yikes. Or, the 49ers could move Jimmie Ward to nickel and play Tarvarius Moore at free safety.
Either way, Reed’s injury could lead to major complications. The 49ers might have to reconfigure their entire secondary if one more player goes down before Reed returns, whenever that might be.