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Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Mohamed Sanu will play against Jets if 49ers dress five WRs, Shanahan says

Sep 18, 2020 at 3:15 PM--

It sounds like a safe bet that wide receiver Mohamed Sanu will be on the field for the 49ers against the New York Jets this weekend, even though he only has one practice under his belt after officially joining the team Friday.

The 49ers officially announced the signing of the veteran receiver late Friday morning after his agent revealed earlier in the week Sanu would be joining the team on a one-year deal. Sanu, 31, brings some much-needed depth to a 49ers receiving room that has been decimated by injury and also has the ability to step in and contribute right away after spending a season in Shanahan's system while Shanahan was the offensive coordinator in Atlanta in 2016.

Shanahan expressed confidence earlier in the week in Sanu's ability to help the 49ers against the Jets and on Friday said Sanu will play if the team decides to dress five receivers. The 49ers played just four receivers in their Week 1 loss to the Arizona Cardinals last Sunday but may have room for more this week, given their injury situations at receiver and tight end.

"If we have five receivers up, he'll be up. We still haven't decided yet with everything going on," said Shanahan. "I know we had four last week but we'll see how it balances out this week."

The 49ers dressed Kendrick Bourne, Dante Pettis, Trent Taylor, and Richie James in their 24-20 loss to the Cardinals while Deebo Samuel (knee) and rookie Brandon Aiyuk (hamstring) were sidelined due to injuries. James suffered a hamstring injury against the Cardinals that has since landed him on injured reserve, while Aiyuk seems ready to return to the field and make his NFL debut against the Jets on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the 49ers took another major hit in the pass-catching department against the Cardinals when tight end George Kittle hurt his knee during a hit from safety Budda Baker. Kittle has been declared out for Sunday's game against the Jets, which may increase the chances of Sanu being in uniform after the 49ers dressed four tight ends against the Cardinals.

If the 49ers need to call upon Sanu this week, Shanahan feels he'll be ready, even after just one practice.

"He's been in the Zoom meetings watching all the installs and stuff," said Shanahan. "We threw him out there today and he didn't make any mistakes. He was able to line up with confidence.

"Mo's a pro. Mo works at it. It was good to seem today; I hadn't seen him for a while. I'm glad to have him here. I know if we go with five we won't hesitate to have him out there, and I know he'll be ready."

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