Ahead of the Monday Night Football game in Week 7, San Francisco 49ers fans and fantasy football managers alike have been waiting on the latest injury update for WR Deebo Samuel. With the utility WR having been held out of practice all week, what did we find out on Saturday when the final injury report was released?
Latest News on Deebo Samuel’s Injury Ahead of Week 7
Unfortunately, the news on Samuel’s shoulder injury is not good. On Saturday, we found out that Samuel has a hairline fracture, which means he will miss at least the next two games. That means the 49ers will be without Samuel until Week 10 due to the team’s bye in Week 9.
Samuel hurt his shoulder during the 49ers Week 6 loss to the Cleveland Browns in somewhat mysterious circumstances at the time. Even the announcers calling the game seemed surprised that Samuel was receiving treatment, as there was no obvious moment that the injury occurred. However, Samuel never returned to the game and was ruled out during the second half.
The 49ers injury report has been a must-watch this week, with both Samuel and RB Christian McCaffrey (oblique) dealing with issues. While the news on McCaffrey is a little more optimistic, the latest update from the 49ers on Samuel is bad for a team looking to bounce back in prime time against the Minnesota Vikings.
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Samuel will miss games against both the Vikings and the Cincinnati Bengals. The current reports have him set to return in Week 10 when the 49ers travel to the Jacksonville Jaguars. At the time of writing, Samuel has not been placed on the IR, as that would mean he could not return until Week 12.
What Does Samuel’s Injury Mean for Fantasy Managers?
There is good and bad news in this latest update for fantasy managers. Things could have been worse if Samuel had been placed on the IR or ruled out for the entire season. However, this will feel like a major blow for fantasy managers with a three-game absence.
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While you were always going to be without Samuel in Week 9 due to the 49ers’ bye week, it just feels that little bit worse when that bye week adds to a two-week absence. The other problem is that there is nt obvious beneficiary that fantasy managers can go and get. Samuel’s role in this offense is unique and will likely be shared among multiple players.
The trio of McCaffrey, George Kittle, and Brandon Aiyuk should all benefit a little in terms of more touches. It will open up more carries for the other backs that might have otherwise been taken by Samuel, but that role is not a significant portion of touches.
Equally, there will be some targets to go spare around the offense, but no one player is likely to suddenly be getting 6-8 targets because of Samuel being out.
The biggest concern for fantasy managers going forward will be trusting Samuel when he returns. How will he hold up to that first hit? Will he be able to get through a full game with a normal workload? His practice status leading up to Week 10 will be key. If he is absent at all or limited, it may end up being a four-week absence for fantasy purposes simply out of precaution.