Friday update: Mitchell no longer has an injury designation going into their matchup with the Cowboys. He should continue to lead the backfield.
Thursday update: Mitchell returned to a limited practice on Thursday. This puts him on track to be the lead back against the Cowboys for the Wild Card round.
Wednesday update: Mitchell did not practice Wednesday, which was part of the load management program for the running back going into the week. If he continues to sit out Thursday and Friday, this will turn into a bigger story regarding his availability.
San Francisco 49ers RB Elijah Mitchell is still dealing with a knee injury and will take it easy at practice most of the week, coach Kyle Shanahan told reporters on Monday evening. Mitchell rushed for 85 yards on 21 carries in the Niners’ 27-24 OT win over the Los Angeles Rams in Week 18 to clinch a playoff spot. San Fran will travel to take on the Dallas Cowboys in the Wild Card round this weekend.
Fantasy football impact
Mitchell looked fine in Week 18, so the 49ers are likely just playing it safe with the RB depth hurting. If Mitchell can’t go in the Wild Card game (which seems unlikely), the Niners would have to lean on JaMychal Hasty and Jeff Wilson Jr. again. Mitchell is much tougher to game plan for than the other two backs. So we’ll monitor Mitchell’s progress at practice and see if he had a designation heading into the WC game.
Last week, Mitchell was listed as questionable but played. This week, we could see a similar scenario where the 49ers are disguising whether or not Mitchell will actually play, and then he’ll end up playing. It’ll make it so the Cowboys have to somewhat game plan to see Hasty or Wilson.