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49ers QB Brock Purdy placed in concussion protocol

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy is in concussion protocol, putting his status for this week's game against the Cincinnati Bengals in doubt.

The San Francisco 49ers are facing uncertainty at the quarterback position as Brock Purdy is currently in concussion protocol. Coach Kyle Shanahan revealed that Purdy experienced symptoms after their loss to the Minnesota Vikings on Monday night and has been placed in the protocol. However, Purdy has shown signs of improvement and was able to participate in a portion of the team's walkthrough practice on Wednesday. Despite this, he still needs to clear several protocols before he can play in Sunday's game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Shanahan mentioned that Purdy could potentially play without practicing this week if he is cleared from the concussion protocol. He pointed to a previous game last season against the Seattle Seahawks where Purdy performed well despite not practicing due to injured ribs. The coach admitted that he was unsure when Purdy sustained the hit that led to the concussion, speculating that it may have occurred during a quarterback sneak attempt in the fourth quarter. Although there were no apparent signs of Purdy being affected by the concussion on film, he did throw interceptions on his final two drives of the game.

In the event that Purdy is unable to play on Sunday, the 49ers will turn to Sam Darnold, the backup quarterback who signed with the team this season. Darnold, who struggled in his previous five seasons with the New York Jets and the Carolina Panthers, beat out the 49ers' 2021 No. 3 overall pick, Trey Lance, for the backup job. Shanahan expressed confidence in Darnold, despite not having played a regular-season NFL game with him. He commended Darnold's performance during the offseason and the first seven weeks of the season, stating that he is always ready to go.

Darnold has started 55 games in his career, but his 78.2 passer rating is the lowest among 38 quarterbacks who have thrown at least 1,000 passes since he entered the league in 2018. However, the 49ers believe that Darnold has never had as talented a team to work with as he does now in San Francisco. The team has been impressed with his accuracy, decision-making, and ability to read the field during the offseason and preseason. Cornerback Charvarius Ward expressed confidence in Darnold's abilities and believes that he can lead the team to score points if called upon.

In other news, left tackle Trent Williams did not practice due to an ankle injury but could potentially return to the field on Thursday. Linebacker Dre Greenlaw was given a rest day, while wide receiver Deebo Samuel remains sidelined with a shoulder injury. Shanahan also acknowledged that defensive coordinator Steve Wilks made a mistake by calling for a blitz with 16 seconds left in the first half of the Vikings game, which resulted in a 60-yard touchdown for Minnesota.

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