By Sam McPherson
Four San Francisco 49ers linebackers are questionable for Sunday’s home game against the Dallas Cowboys, and considering the team’s outright release of veteran NaVorro Bowman—he suited up for the Oakland Raiders on Thursday Night Football last night—this is quite an unfortunate situation for the 49ers to be in under the circumstances.
Bowman was released as the 49ers organization was starting to phase in younger players at the position, and he wanted a chance to play full time in 2017. Now it seems as though the S.F. staff was too hasty in releasing the former All-Pro linebacker and longtime defensive stalwart.
Armstrong, Coyle, Foster and Watson may not play against Dallas
The 49ers are now basically operating with a very thin linebackers corps after Bowman’s release. Ray-Ray Armstrong (shoulder), Brock Coyle (shoulder), Reuben Foster (ankle) and Dekoda Watson (groin) all were limited participants in workouts this week and are questionable for the Dallas match up on Sunday.
In addition, pass rushing specialist Aaron Lynch—who lines up as either a linebacker or a lineman depending—is definitely out for the Cowboys game as he did not practice this week at due to calf problem that sidelined him last Sunday against the Washington Redskins.
Bowman was in on 11 tackles Thursday night at the Coliseum against the Kansas City Chiefs after starting right away for the Silver & Black. The 49ers probably wish right now they hadn’t released Bowman, even if they don’t admit it.
Offense good to go except for Juszczyk
Fullback Kyle Juszczyk (back) is the only injured offensive player of note this week on the official team injury report. He didn’t workout this week at all, so Juszczyk is out on Sunday. He also missed last week’s game after catching eight passes in the first five games for 80 yards and a touchdown.
The Dallas game will be the first NFL start for rookie quarterback C.J. Beathard, so it’s good to see most of the regular offense ready to go in support of the first-time starter against the Cowboys.
The Cowboys are healthy
Coming off their bye week, the Dallas Cowboys are feeling good. Only cornerback Chidobe Awuzie (hamstring) and linebacker Justin Durant (groin) were listed Friday on the injury report. Awuzie is out after missing practice all week, while Durant is questionable after being limited in workouts on Friday.
Dallas is 2-3 and will be looking to come out strong from the week off. It helps their cause that the roster is pretty healthy right now.
- (LB) Ray-Ray Armstrong (Shoulder) — Limited Participation In Practice
- (LB) Brock Coyle (Shoulder) — Limited Participation In Practice
- (LB) Reuben Foster (Ankle) — Limited Participation In Practice
- (LB) Dekoda Watson (Groin) — Limited Participation In Practice
- (FB) Kyle Juszczyk (Back) — Unable to Participate In Practice
- (DL) Aaron Lynch (Calf) — Unable to Participate In Practice