HomeSports49ers' Deebo Samuel (shoulder) returns to practice Thursday ahead of NFC title...

49ers’ Deebo Samuel (shoulder) returns to practice Thursday ahead of NFC title game vs. Lions

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Star San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel was a limited participant in practice Thursday, a positive step after Samuel missed practice Wednesday as he continues to deal with a shoulder injury. 

His status for Sunday’s NFC Championship Game against the Detroit Lions (6:30 p.m. PT on FOX and the FOX Sports App) is still unclear, but Samuel’s return to the practice field is an encouraging sign of his chances of playing.

Samuel suffered the injury in the first half of last Saturday’s 49ers divisional round win against the Green Bay Packers, which knocked him out of the rest of the game. 

49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said Wednesday that Samuel is “feeling better.” Samuel missed nearly three full games during the regular season with a shoulder fracture suffered in the first half of the 49ers’ Week 6 game against the Cleveland Browns. Those three games accounted for three of the 49ers’ five losses in the 2023 season.

X-rays earlier this week revealed that Samuel avoided a repeat of that injury, but he is still dealing with shoulder pain, Shanahan said Wednesday.

Samuel’s fellow starting wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk expects him to play Sunday, as does Hall of Famer Jerry Rice, the legendary former 49ers wideout who is often around the current team.

More on Deebo Samuel: 

Samuel, in his fifth NFL season out of South Carolina, is considered one of the most versatile offensive weapons in the NFL, with the ability to line up at both wide receiver and running back with ease. He gained 1,117 yards from scrimmage with 12 touchdowns in the regular season, and had two catches for 24 yards before his injury Saturday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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