SANTA CLARA -- Running back Brandon Jacobs might be available for the 49ers' season opener Sept. 9 against the Green Bay Packers.And 49ers running back LaMichael James might be ready for practice later on Monday.When Jacobs sustained a left knee injury early in Saturday night's game against the Houston Texans and James went down with a left ankle injury late, there was initial concern.But the 49ers' thorough evaluations of both players alleviated those worries. Coach Jim Harbaugh said immediately after the game that both players would be fine."We were real accurate with that after the ballgame," Harbaugh said on Monday. "That assessment was accurate in both cases."Jacobs walked with the assistance of crutches Monday at the team's practice facility."I'm doing all right," he said. "I can't complain."Jacobs underwent an MRI that revealed no significant knee damage. His injury is not to the anterior cruciate ligament or the patella, Harbaugh said. Although the 49ers did not confirm the exact nature of the Jacobs' injury, a medial collateral sprain can keep a player out of action a much-shorter period of time."Brandon for the opener is possible," Harbaugh said. "Again, we'll just how to see how the treatment goes, how the body responds."Said 49ers running back Frank Gore, "Brandon's good. I'm happy that it wasn't that serious. He'll be back in a week or two. He'll be fine."James, who promised Saturday that he would not miss a practice, was Monday walking without any noticeable limp.
RENTON, Wash. -- The Seattle Seahawks will be without safety Earl Thomas for the rest of the season due to his broken lower left leg, no matter how far the team advances in the playoffs.
Coach Pete Carroll said Monday that further examination determined Thomas' fractured left tibia will require a recovery time that does not allow for the possibility of a return during the 2016 season. Carroll said after Sunday's 40-7 win over Carolina that Thomas' injury usually takes a minimum of six weeks of recovery time.
It's the first major injury of Thomas' career. He played 106 straight games before missing Seattle's loss at Tampa Bay last week with a hamstring injury. He quickly recovered to play against the Panthers, but was hurt in a second-quarter collision with teammate Kam Chancellor going for an interception.
Mike Nolan coached the 49ers for three full seasons before he was fired after Week 7 in his fourth year at the helm.
On Monday morning, he was asked about the situation in Santa Clara and if he would make a change at head coach or general manager.
"It's sad that it's gone to where it is," Nolan said on 95.7 The Game. "They're beginning to look much like when I took the job over in 2005 ... and there really was not a lot of good personnel on the team.
"The difference though that is better and will continue to be better, they will be (in) a much better cap situation going forward than we ever were back then ... but the losing I should say is really killing them.
"The personnel is not as bad as they're playing and that's the thing that really gets under your skin as a coach because you're frustrated by what's going on ... the thing that I have thought most of the season when people were talking about changes as the losses started to mount up, was not to change it. Because I know Trent (Baalke) personally, and Trent does a good job with personnel and that's his primary job.
"But for a lot of strange reasons -- guys retiring, guys quitting a couple years ago, just a lot of weird things that occurred -- their roster has kind of fallen off a little bit, but it is still a much better roster than some of these other teams that are not winning."
After winning their Week 1 game against the Rams, the 49ers have lost a franchise-record 11 straight games.
Chip Kelly is under contract through 2019 and the team owes Jim Tomsula $7 million over the next two years combined.
Baalke's contract runs through 2018.
"It's about players first and I think they have the right guy in place to pick the players but unfortunately for Trent, I think the choice of Tomsula hurt him and currently right now with Chip Kelly it's not helping him either," Nolan added. "They do not have a bad roster.
"Obviously they need a quarterback. They could be a .500 team in my opinion if they get a quarterback as near as next year even ... they got a tough decision to make at the end."