San Francisco 49ers running back Carlos Hyde has finally returned to the practice field, albeit on a limited basis.
Hyde (concussion) has been cleared for football activity and was spotted on the practice field Wednesday sporting a non-contact jersey, according to CSN Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco.
Hyde has been undergoing concussion protocol since sustaining a concussion during San Francisco’s third preseason game in August. He’s expected to play in San Francisco’s regular-season opener against the Los Angeles Rams Monday night. Although he didn’t take any contact Wednesday, it’s encouraging to see him return to practice with plenty of time before game day.
The third-year tailback played in only seven games last season after sustaining a stress fracture in his foot during Week 7 of the 2015 season. He was ultimately placed on season-ending injured reserve after rushing for 470 yards and three touchdowns on 115 carries during his second season.
Hyde’s presence will be greatly welcomed back. San Francisco’s offense is devoid of many playmakers outside of Hyde and wide receiver Torrey Smith. Second-string wideout Bruce Ellington was lost for the season with a hamstring injury and the Niners have tried to patch together a somewhat reputable receiving corps for quarterback Blaine Gabbert.
A steady running game will benefit the entire offense. The 49ers will hope Hyde can stay healthy and develop into a big play catalyst for a potentially sluggish offense.