After returning to practice on Tuesday afternoon, San Francisco 49ers’ running back Jerick McKinnon suffered another setback.
McKinnon, who missed all of 2018 with a torn ACL, was activated from the PUP list on August 6. He was able to practice a couple of times before before needing a platelet-rich-plasma (PRP) injection in his knee. Yesterday was his first practice in three weeks.
But, as general manager John Lynch told KNBR, it did not go as planned.
“Yesterday we brought him out and it’s a real bummer because he keeps getting to the final step,” Lynch said on KNBR radio this morning. “And the final step is actually playing NFL football, particularly at his position where you have got to make hard cuts. You’ve got to put your foot in the ground. And we did it a month ago. And we got to that step and he kind of regressed and I would say yesterday we had a similar situation. So we’re trying to get to ‘OK, what’s really the root cause of the problems that he’s having? Yesterday was not encouraging from that standpoint for Jet. What that means, we’re not sure yet. We’re working hard to find that out.”
Yesterday, head coach Kyle Shanahan had hoped that McKinnon would be ready for Week One against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
“We obviously would love him to be, Shanahan said. “We’ve just got to make sure that he’s healthy and ready to go and when he’ll be. Today was the first process, really, of getting him out there and giving us a chance to decide that and giving himself a chance to decide it. He’s done as much as he can in rehab and now we’ll see how it goes over these few days.”
It remains to be seen if the 49ers decide to keep McKinnon on the 53-man roster and then put him on Injured Reserve with the chance to come back in eight weeks, or if they decide to put him on IR before and lose him for the season.