San Francisco 49ers Offer Timeline on WR Samuel's Return

The news just keeps getting better for the San Francisco 49ers and their wide receiver Deebo Samuel. At a Tuesday press conference, head coach Kyle Shanahan said he expects the fourth-year pass catcher to return from his knee and ankle sprains in approximately three weeks. Samuel went down in agony with his leg twisting beneath a tackler in the first half of the San Francisco 49ers' Week 14 35-7 triumph over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He was carted off the field, appearing utterly distraught. Relatively positive news and diagnoses began leaking out later that night.

With Samuel's return before the regular season finale all but assured, the 49ers can refocus on the task of actually making the playoffs. Third-string quarterback Brock Purdy is apparently suffering from an oblique injury, and if he struggles in any of the team's final four games (or misses them), the 9-4 49ers could risk losing the division. The 7-6 Seattle Seahawks are right behind them in the NFC West and host them this week on Thursday Night Football.

Samuel leads the 49ers in yards from scrimmage this season, so his absence certainly won't go unnoticed. He hasn't quite been the devasting receiver he was last season (his yards per target have dropped from 11.6 in 2021 to 6.7 this year), but he still adds value by moonlighting in the 49ers' backfield. He has rushed for 228 yards at 5.6 yards per attempt this season.
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