NFL

49ers receiver Deebo Samuel expected to return before the playoffs

By Sports Desk December 12, 2022

In a season full of grim injury news, the San Francisco 49ers received an encouraging update for a change.

A day after Deebo Samuel was carted off the field, the 49ers announced that the versatile wide receiver is expected to return before the end of the regular season.

The 2021 First Team All-Pro selection suffered a sprained left ankle and MCL Sunday when he was taken down awkwardly during San Francisco’s 35-7 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Samuel has accounted for 840 yards from scrimmage and five total touchdowns this season.

When Samuel was carted off the field, many had feared the 49ers had lost another key contributor to a devastating injury after running back Elijah Mitchell, defensive lineman Javon Kinlaw and defensive backs Jason Verrett and Jimmie Ward all ended up on injured reserve.

Most notably, quarterback Trey Lance was lost for the season to a broken right ankle in Week 2, while his replacement, Jimmy Garoppolo, will miss at least the rest of the regular season with a foot injury.

The injuries to Lance and Garoppolo have forced the 49ers to turn to rookie quarterback Brock Purdy, who made his first career start in Sunday’s victory.

Purdy responded by playing brilliantly, accounting for three total touchdowns, but did not get through unscathed, suffering an oblique injury on the second series of the game.

"I think it was a challenge for [Purdy]," coach Kyle Shanahan said. "Just talking to him and seeing him after the game. I think he really toughed it out, did some real good things with it and I know he is sore today."

Purdy and the 49ers (9-4) face a quick turnaround before they play the Seattle Seahawks Thursday night.

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