Staley expected to play, start vs. Seahawks

Staley expects to be 100 percent by Sunday

Staley expected to play, start vs. Seahawks
December 8, 2013, 10:00 am
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Including the playoffs, Joe Staley has started 49 consecutive games since the start of the 2011 season. (AP)

Programming note: Immediately following the 49ers-Seahawks game, change the channel to CSN Bay Area for 49ers Postgame Live.

SAN FRANCISCO – All indications are that 49ers left tackle Joe Staley will be in the starting lineup Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks.

Staley returned to practice Thursday and Friday after the club initially thought he might miss a game or two with an MCL sprain of his right knee.

The 49ers typically have two backup offensive linemen active for games. The team did not make a roster move over the weekend to activate a lineman off the practice squad, so that’s a clear indication the 49ers are confident Staley will be in the starting lineup.

The 49ers have eight offensive linemen on their active roster. Guard Mike Iupati is not expected to play, so the 49ers would have activated either Al Netter or Carter Bykowski to give them two backups for Sunday's game if Staley was also unavailable.

Adam Snyder is expected to make his third consecutive starter in place of Iupati, whose is MCL sprain is more severe than Staley’s. Iupati has not practiced since sustaining the injury Nov. 17 against the New Orleans Saints.

Cornerback Tarell Brown is not expected to be available to play due to internal injuries sustained while taking a shot to the ribs against the Saints. He returned to limited practice last week but was still experiencing a considerable amount of pain.

Backup tight end Vance McDonald (ankle) is questionable, while Garrett Celek (hamstring) is available to return to action after missing two games. Derek Carrier has been active the past two games in place of Celek as the No. 3 tight end.