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49ers injury news: Often-injured DB Jimmie Ward suffered a broken finger in practice

Sep 5, 2019 at 12:42 PM--

It looks like the San Francisco 49ers' often-injured defensive back, Jimmie Ward, will miss more time. He suffered a broken finger during Wednesday's practice, won't practice on Thursday, and will likely miss Sunday's regular-season opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Second-year defensive back Tarvarius Moore will likely start at free safety if Ward cannot go, which has not been made official yet.

"T-Moore has been doing a great job and shown that he's earned the right to go out there and play," defensive coordinator Robert Saleh told reporters before Thursday's practice. "We've still got K'Waun Williams. Emmanuel Moseley can play nickel. D.J. Reed is still there, along with (Antone) Exum, so we're fine. It doesn't really change anything we're going game-plan-wise."

Ward was returning from a fractured collarbone he suffered in May. Four of his five NFL seasons have ended on injured reserve. Ward suffered a fractured foot during his 2014 rookie year, a fractured clavicle in 2016, and a broken forearm during each of the past two seasons.

"Our performance staff, they do all these tests," Saleh continued. "He comes out above average in everything. It's been bad luck [...] The stuff that happens to him is bad luck. It really is bad luck. Something good is going to happen to him. He's a good man, so it's got to."

Ward played college football at Northern Illinois, and the 49ers made him the No. 30 overall selection in 2014. Ward registered 24 combined tackles and a forced fumble through nine games and seven starts with the 49ers in 2018. He has recorded 186 combined tackles, two sacks, 21 passes defensed, two interceptions, a touchdown, and two forced fumbles through his five NFL seasons.

"I stand by it; I think if Jimmie can get through a full 16-game season, I think the whole world will see how good he is," Saleh added. "He's a very special talent."

Ward wasn't the only injury update on Thursday. Rookie defensive end Nick Bosa will play on Sunday, according to Saleh. He is returning from an ankle injury.

Saleh is also confident that K'Waun Williams (knee) will be ready for Sunday.

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