Just because a window of practice has been opened for a player doesn’t mean that player will practice. Such is the case for 49ers linebacker NaVorro Bowman, who is eligible to rejoin teammates on the field this week but who instead is continuing to rehabilitate his surgically repaired knee with trainers.
Asked Wednesday if Bowman will take part in team drills, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said: “I don’t expect that today. Probably not this week, no.”
The 49ers on Tuesday opened a 21-day window to allow Bowman and several other injured players to begin practicing. That move had to be made at that point to give Bowman, who had been on the physically-unable-to-perform list, and the others an opportunity to join the 53-man roster later this season.
The fact that he’s not practicing is the latest tap to the brakes on expectations that the All-Pro linebacker will play this season. Bowman tore his ACL and MCL in the NFC Championship Game in January and had surgery the next month. He is 91/2 months removed from that procedure.
Furthermore, the 49ers’ defense has played well without him and fellow starter Patrick Willis, who is out for the season because of a toe injury. The 49ers rank fourth in total defense and are tied for 10th in scoring defense.
Jackson a 49er? – Wide receiver DeSean Jackson said he nearly paid the 49ers a visit when he was a free agent in March.
“It was a close call,” the former Cal star said on a conference call from Virginia. “I almost made the trip to come out there, but obviously Washington did what they did and they kept me here and made everything right.”
Washington signed Jackson to a three-year, $24 million deal in early April. Two weeks later, the 49ers signed Brandon Lloyd to a one-year contract and the following month traded for Stevie Johnson. Lloyd has a base salary of $955,000 this year; Johnson’s is $3.7 million.
Three quarterbacks have started for three-win Washington this season, and the team is in disarray after a humbling home loss to Tampa Bay on Sunday. But Jackson’s numbers continue to be strong. He ranks ninth in the league with 819 receiving yards, averages an NFL-high 20.5 yards a catch and has scored four touchdowns.
Jackson said he spoke with Harbaugh and 49ers general manager Trent Baalke when he was on the market in March.
“Myself and coach Harbaugh played against each other when he was at Stanford and I was at Cal and things like that, so I respect him and what he’s done,” he said.
Injuries – Right tackle Anthony Davis did not practice because of the concussion he suffered at the end of Sunday’s game. Davis must show he is symptom-free all week in order to play against Washington. If he can’t, Jonathan Martin will fill in.
Also missing were cornerback Tramaine Brock (hamstring), receiver Bruce Ellington (ankle) and defensive end Justin Smith (not injury related). Linebacker Dan Skuta (ankle) and nose tackle Glenn Dorsey (arm) were limited in practice.
Read Matt Barrows’ blogs and archives at www.sacbee.com/sf49ers.