49ers rookie wideout Trent Taylor may not finish his first NFL season. Head coach Kyle Shanahan revealed earlier today that the receiver broke a rib on a non-contact play, although the team is hoping he’ll see the field again this year (via Matt Barrows of The Sacramento Bee on Twitter). Meanwhile, the team is preparing to place three players on the injured reserve (via Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle on Twitter), including safety Jaquiski Tartt, tight end Cole Hikutini and offensive tackle Garry Gilliam. We heard yesterday that Tartt was likely done for the season.
Taylor, who was selected in the fifth round of this past year’s draft, has gradually climbed the 49ers depth chart throughout the season. The rookie had appeared in all nine games, hauling in 24 receptions for 204 yards and one touchdown. The Louisiana Tech product had also returned 17 punts for 167 yards. The team signed wideout Louis Murphy earlier today for some reinforcement at the position, as they were previously rostering only four healthy wideouts in Marquise Goodwin, Aldrick Robinson, Kendrick Bourne, and Victor Bolden.
While Hikutini and Gilliam are headed to the IR, there is some optimism, as Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area tweets that the players injured their MCLs instead of their ACLs. Gilliam joined the 49ers this past summer following three seasons with the Seahawks, and he proceeded to appear in eight games (one start) for his new team. The team could theoretically be in the hunt for another tackle, as their reserve options (which include Zane Beadles, Erik Magnuson, and Darrell Williams Jr.) mostly have experience at offensive guard. Hikutini, an undrafted rookie out of Louisville, saw the field for four games this season, hauling in a pair of passes for 15 yards. The team will presumably look for some depth behind George Kittle and Garrett Celek.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.