Joe Staley won’t play in the 49ers’ preseason finale Thursday, but the left tackle’s knee injury is not a long-term concern.
Coach Kyle Shanahan on Monday said Staley took an awkward step on the first-quarter play in which quarterback Brian Hoyer hit receiver Marquise Goodwin on a 46-yard touchdown strike.
“You could tell he caught it a little bit on the turf,” Shanahan said. “I think it scared him more than anything. I know he’s got some stuff in there (the knee). ... He landed a little awkwardly on it. You could see it if you (watched) the end-zone copy. We just wanted to be safe with him.”
Shanahan said the 10-year veteran has a bit of tendonitis and “wear and tear” in one of his knees, which prompted him to go to the sideline. Staley, however, wanted to return to the game and the team is confident he will be ready for the Week 1 home game against the Carolina Panthers on Sept. 10.
The longest tenured 49er won’t play against the Los Angeles Chargers in the teams’ annual preseason finale. Shanahan said he and his staff haven’t decided who exactly will be in uniform but that “most of the starters” would watch from the sideline.
Unlike in previous years when teams first reduced rosters from 90 to 75 players and then to a 53-man squad, there is only one cut-down day this year. The 49ers, who currently have 89 players on the active roster, must be down to 53 players by 1 p.m. Saturday.
Backup John Theus entered the game for Staley on the 49ers’ second series. He played the rest of the game (50 snaps) and performed fairly well, according to Pro Football Focus. The rating service gave him demerits for allowing two quarterback pressures. But he did not give up a sack and was an effective run blocker.
“The protection was not perfect,” Shanahan said. “But I thought he battled in there and he helped us get through it.”
Nickel cornerback K’Waun Williams left the game with a biceps bruise but the injury is not considered long term.