Chip Kelly said Thursday he expects Glenn Dorsey to be in uniform for Monday's game against the Rams, a bit of a surprise given the timing of Dorsey's knee injury and the fact that he hadn't yet gone through a full practice when the week began.
Dorsey tore his right ACL Nov. 22 against the Seahawks. On Thursday, he was on a stationary bike when practice began.
Kelly offered a caveat on Dorsey’s game-day status. “As long as he continues to progress. Again, he could get hurt today in practice or have a setback. Seems like he’s on track.”
Dorsey’s return would be a boost to a deep and talented defensive front but one that doesn’t have a lot of experience. Dorsey, 32, is the only member in his thirties. The next-most experienced player is Quinton Dial, who is entering his fourth year in the league. Dorsey missed all of the team’s preseason games, and on Wednesday defensive coordinator Jim O’Neil said Dorsey had not yet gone through a full practice.
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“It’s still probably a little too early in the week to tell, but he has been able to do a little bit more over the past couple of weeks,” O’Neil said. “These next couple of days will be huge for him.”
In other injury news, two candidates to play the nickel spot, Chris Davis and Keith Reaser, were working on a side field when practice began. Reaser has been dealing with an ankle injury that kept him out of the preseason finale. Davis had a sleeve on his knee.
If neither can play, Dontae Johnson would be available to play the nickel role. Or Jimmie Ward could slide inside on obvious passing downs, allowing Johnson or Rashard Robinson to fill in on the outside.
The 49ers will issue their first practice report of the year later this afternoon.