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49ers need to sort out banged-up offensive line

September 11, 2018

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, center, is sacked by Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson (93) and defensive end Everson Griffen (97) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 9, 2018, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn)

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — The San Francisco 49ers have plenty of holes to fill before their Week 2 game against the Detroit Lions — starting on the offensive line.

Two right guards were lost to injury in Sunday’s 24-16 loss at Minnesota. The good news for San Francisco is that none of the injuries the team suffered Sunday appear to be season-ending.

Right guard Mike Person left in the second quarter with a strained foot. His replacement, Joshua Garnett, exited with a dislocated toe on his left foot the third quarter. That meant rookie Mike McGlinchey had to shift from right tackle to guard in his NFL debut.

Coach Kyle Shanahan said Monday that he didn’t have a timetable for the return of Person or Garnett, but he expressed relief that neither appears to be a candidate for season-ending injured reserve.

The 49ers have a spot open on the 53-man roster, and Shanahan said several players will be brought in for workouts, with the idea of adding someone to the active roster by Wednesday.

“I know we’ve got some workouts. We’re bringing in (players at) a number of positions tomorrow,” Shanahan said. “We’ve got some guys who are a possibility. We’ve got guys who are a possibility on the practice squad.”

Receiver Marquise Goodwin, who collided with a defender in the second quarter Sunday, has a deep thigh bruise on his right leg and is day-to-day.

Should he miss time, it could open up a bigger role for rookie Dante Pettis, who caught a 22-yard touchdown from Jimmy Garoppolo for his first career catch.

Linebacker Brock Coyle, who started Sunday for the injured Malcolm Smith, is in the concussion protocol. He’d have to be cleared by doctors to play against Detroit.

With the right side of the offensive line disrupted by injuries, the Vikings put consistent pressure on Garoppolo and sacked him three times.

After Person and Garnett left the game, the 49ers turned to reserve tackle Garry Gilliam, who had exited the concussion protocol a few days before the opener. Gilliam took over at right tackle as McGlinchey shifted to guard.

Person is also the backup to center Weston Richburg. But if Erik Magnuson can return from a hamstring injury this week, it would provide a boost as he can also play center.

Shanahan was pleased with McGlinchey, the No. 9 overall draft pick out of Notre Dame, who held his own after moving to guard.

“It was his first NFL game, he had never played guard and you could see there was nothing about him that was scared to try it,” Shanahan said. “He had to do it and he didn’t flinch at all.”

NOTES: Shanahan reiterated the missed opportunities in the red zone Sunday, as the 49ers scored just one touchdown with four opportunities inside the Vikings’ 20. Asked by a reporter if he would consider using more run-pass options in the red zone, Shanahan replied: “We (tried) one yesterday. ... The RPO questions are getting hilarious to me. It’s not just you. It’s the whole planet right now.”

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