Joshua Morgan’s been the 49ers’ best wide receiver this season, so the news that Morgan sustained a fractured ankle late in Sunday’s 48-3 win over Tampa Bay makes Niners fans feel like they drank a $100 bottle of wine and got the unmistakable aftertaste of Boone’s Farm.
Since we don’t know how bad the fracture is, Morgan’s injury is not only a tough loss for the 49ers, it’s also frustrating for know-it-all fans. Because part of the fun of following sports 24/7 is pretending you know the same amount of medical information that doctors do.
“Well, a fractured ankle is better than tearing ligaments, because ligaments can take more time to heal. Plus the structural integrity of the ankle isn’t compromised, and…”
Sorry amateur MDs, Morgan was playing well at a position where the 49ers are rather thin, and he’s going to be out a number of weeks regardless of if the fracture is minor or “Grade Buster.” The only traditional wide receivers left are:
Michael Crabtree: the first-round pick who started this year the way he normally does, nursing an injury of his own.
Ted Ginn: he sure can return the hell out of a kick or punt, but Ginn hasn’t exactly been known for having the best hands in the NFL.
Kyle Williams: quietly kind of awesome, Williams could actually break out and do some things … but the fact remains he hasn’t done much yet.
Braylon Edwards is still recovering from knee surgery, and it sounds like the earliest he could return is after the bye week against Cleveland, three weeks from today.
Almost makes one wish the 49ers didn’t cut Ronald Johnson. Or maybe that’s just me.
Look for Dominique Zeigler to make his return, unless the 49ers are enthralled with current practice squad receivers Joe Hastings and/or John Matthews. Or, if they really want to get crazy they could…
No, stop it.
The Niners would rather share the Coliseum with the Raiders, right?
Both of them are washed up.
…sign Randy Moss or Terrell Owens?
Sorry, just had to throw that out there for SEO and giggles. There’s absolutely no way Harbaugh risks ceding control of the locker room to either one of those guys this early on. Bill Belichick won his first Super Bowl with a team that wanted to be introduced together instead of individually, before Tom Brady’s hairstyle actually counted as newsworthy in some circles. It wasn’t until years later that Belickich started feeling Randy.
Luckily for Jim Harbaugh, Greg Roman and the rest of the 49ers, Vernon Davis and Delanie Walker both play the role of “really big wide receiver” for the Niners when they aren’t asked to block for Frank Gore or Kendall Hunter. But they’ll need another receiver, at least for one game, to replace the WR with the most catches (15), yards (220) and the highest yards per catch (14.7) on the roster. Zeigler’s got great hands and runs fundamentally sound routes. If he gets the call, there will be many 49ers fans hoping he makes the best out of the opportunity.