The 49ers are optimistic when training camp opens in late-July that only one player will not be on the field as practices begin.
The team’s medical staff held out several players due to health concerns during the 49ers’ offseason program, which wrapped up last week with a three-day minicamp. But the team is expected to have 89 players available for practices leading up to the first exhibition game Aug. 15 at the Houston Texans.
Here’s a look at the 49ers’ injury situation after the conclusion of the team’s nine-week offseason program:
WR DeAndre Smelter: A fourth-round draft pick, Smelter will open camp on the non-football injury list. He continues to rehab from a torn left ACL he sustained on Nov. 29 in Georgia Tech’s upset of Georgia. Smelter is making progress and there remains a chance that he’ll be available at some point in training camp. More likely, he will likely open the season on NFI, which means he is eligible to begin practicing anywhere from after Week 6 through Week 11. Once he begins practicing, he’ll be granted three weeks of on-field work before the 49ers must make a decision to activate him, place him on season-ending NFI or release him.
C Daniel Kilgore: Kilgore continues to heal from a broken left lower leg he sustained Oct. 19 against the Denver Broncos. He did not participate in any on-field work during the offseason. Kilgore might have been playing the best of any of the 49ers’ offensive linemen at the time of his injury, which was similar to what Ian Williams sustained the previous season against the Seattle Seahawks. When asked if he believed Kilgore would be ready for camp, 49ers coach Jim Tomsula said, “We think so. But with Kilgore, we’re just talking about healing.” Kilgore will compete against Marcus Martin to reclaim his starting job.
DL Darnell Dockett: Dockett’s final season with the Cardinals ended before it began when he tore his right ACL on Aug. 18 during training camp. The 49ers were cautious with Dockett during the offseason program, figuring there was no reason to take any chances with the 11-year NFL veteran. They’ll continue to be cautious with him in training camp, too. Dockett figures into the 49ers’ defensive-line rotation primarily as a nickel pass-rusher.
DB Jimmie Ward: His rookie season ended on Nov. 9 when the screw that was inserted into his right foot before last year’s draft for his Jones fracture was bent, re-fracturing his foot. “Jimmie Ward, I think right now is scheduled to be ready,” Tomsula said. Ward is the front-runner, if he remains healthy, to win the job as the 49ers’ nickel back.
LB NaVorro Bowman: One of the most encouraging aspects of the offseason program was the continued improvement from Bowman, a three-time All-Pro performer who missed last season after sustaining a torn ACL and MCL in his left knee during the NFC Championship game in January 2014 against the Seattle Seahawks. The 49ers scheduled some recovery days into Bowman’s offseason plan, but he took on a larger workload in all activities as the offseason program continued. Once the pads go on during camp, the 49ers will continue to monitor his condition.
LB Aldon Smith: He missed the final two days of the 49ers’ mandatory minicamp after a teammate stepped on his foot. The injury is considered minor and will have not lasting impact when camp opens.
WR Bruce Ellington: After a good start to the offseason program, he sat out the entire session of organized team activities due to a hamstring injury. He should be ready for training camp as he competes to become No. 3 wideout and return specialist.
RB Carlos Hyde: He returned to the practice field for the final week of workouts after being held out of a few weeks of workouts with a calf strain. If it were the regular season, he likely would’ve been able to play through it.
LB Aaron Lynch: He missed most of the offseason program as a rookie with a double-hamstring injury. This year, he’s been sidelined with just one hamstring strain. He should be ready for camp.
CB Shareece Wright: A strong contender for a starting job, Wright missed most of the on-field workouts with a leg injury. The 49ers did not want to take any chances of having an injury that lingers into training camp, so they shut him down to ensure he’ll be ready to go in late-July.
TE Derek Carrier: He ended last season on injured reserve with a foot injury, and he sat out most of OTAs with a foot injury. It’s not a fracture, Tomsula said, and he should be ready to go for camp.
CB Tramaine Brock: After being plagued by injuries (turf toe and hamstring) all of last season, he participated in the offseason program without any setbacks.
RB Kendall Hunter: Hunter had an impressive offseason program after returning from an torn ACL that ended his season a year ago in training camp. He’ll compete for a role in the team’s crowded backfield.
OL Alex Boone: He ended the season on injured reserve with a minor knee injury he sustained in the 49ers’ next-to-last game of the season. He did not take part in the 49ers’ voluntary offseason as he worked out on his own. But Boone was on the field for the mandatory minicamp. After starting the past three seasons at right guard, Boone lined up some at left guard as a possible replacement for Mike Iupati.
TE Vance McDonald: He went on injured reserve last season with a back injury. He took part fully in the team’s offseason program and will compete for a role in the offense against a beefed-up competition at tight end behind Vernon Davis
NT Ian Williams: He sustained a “small fracture” in his left lower leg in November that landed him on injured reserve. The injury was nowhere near as significant as the fracture of the previous year. He was able to participate in the offseason program, and is in line to compete for the starting job at nose tackle.
NT Glenn Dorsey: After not playing at all in 2014 due to a torn triceps sustained in training camp, Dorsey lined up at left defensive end with the starters during last week’s minicamp.
WR Chuck Jacobs: He sustained a season-ending torn ACL in the 49ers’ exhibition game at Baltimore a year ago. Not only is he back, but he looked very good during the offseason program.
DL Kaleb Ramsey: After spending all of last season on physically-unable-to-perform due to an Achilles injury he sustained in the offseason program as a rookie, Ramsey is back and will compete for a roster spot.
FB Trey Millard: He sat out his entire rookie season due to a torn ACL sustained during his final season at Oklahoma. He is healthy and took the first-team reps at fullback for most of the offseason when Bruce Miller was tending to a legal issue.
CB Keith Reaser: He made a strong return this offseason from missing his entire rookie season with an ACL tear he sustained in his final season at Florida Atlantic. Reaser will compete for a roster spot – or, possibly, a role on the team’s defense.
G Brandon Thomas: He is healthy after sustaining a torn ACL during a pre-draft workout in 2014. Thomas figures to be a factor for a starting guard position as the 49ers look to assemble their offensive line.
CB Kenneth Acker: After a strong training camp, Acker appeared ticketed for a spot on the 53-man roster. But it all worked out for the 49ers, as they diagnosed a stress fracture in his foot and placed him on injured reserve. He is healthy and will compete for a roster spot.
CB Chris Cook: After going on injured reserve in October with a torn hamstring, Cook was able to participate fully in the 49ers’ offseason program. He joins a crowded competition for roster spots/roles.