Weston Richburg is not expected to be ready to return when first eligible to come off the 49ers’ PUP list next week. San Francisco’s starting center will need more time to recover from the torn patellar tendon he suffered late last season.
Kyle Shanahan said Friday that neither Richburg nor defensive lineman Ronald Blair will be ready to return when eligible after Week 6, via Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area. Both suffered injuries last season; Blair went down in November, Richburg in December.
Both are likelier to return between Weeks 10 and 12, per Shanahan. The 49ers’ bye week is currently slated for Week 11. Richburg said in February a training camp return was realistic. The former Giants center did not come particularly close to hitting that goal, and a Week 12 return would make for almost a year out of action. A 2018 free agent signing, Richburg suffered one of the toughest injuries to surmount. The 49ers have started Ben Garland at center in their past four games.
Shanahan said the ACL surgery Blair underwent was not successful. A setback ensued, requiring a follow-up procedure. Blair, who the team hoped would be ready for Week 1, has served as a depth piece for the past four 49er teams. Much has changed since Blair last appeared in a game for the 49ers. DeForest Buckner and Sheldon Day are now Colts, and Nick Bosa, Dee Ford and Solomon Thomas are on IR.