According to San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan, his team’s star running back — Christian McCaffrey — seems to be healthy coming out of the bye week. McCaffrey, a 2023 First-Team All-Pro, was one of many starters who were held out of the 49ers’ regular season finale in Week 18. Unlikely most of those starters, though, McCaffrey was actually dealing with an injury that led to him not suiting up.
McCaffrey was a non-participant in practice during the final week of the regular season due to a calf injury, but now is a full go for San Francisco on the first day of practice this week. In McCaffrey’s last appearance, Week 17 against the Washington Commanders, he carried the ball just 14 times for 64 yards and caught four passes for 27 yards. That was the third-lowest yards from scrimmage total that he’s had in a game during the 2023 season.
On the year, he’s recorded 272 carries for 1,459 yards and 14 touchdowns to go along with 67 receptions for 564 yards and seven more scores. He hasn’t been used as a returner in a regular season game since his rookie season of 2017 with the Carolina Panthers, but don’t be surprised if you see McCaffrey have an opportunity to field the ball in a high-leverage situation this week.
So if you thought that the Green Bay Packers, the 49ers’ next opponent, were going to be let off the hook on the McCaffrey front, sorry to disappoint you. The only other major piece of injury news that came out of San Francisco today is that their backup safety, George Odum, was a limited participant. Odum is currently on the injured reserve, which means that someone would have to be let go from their 53-man roster for the team to add some safety depth to the position. Odum is also a two-time All-Pro special teamer at the non-return, non-specialist position.