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It appears Santa is being generous to the 49ers this year. Matthew Stafford has been placed on injured reserve, so the Lions will start third-string rookie Drew Stanton against San Francisco. This will be Stanton's first-ever NFL start.
Stanton told the Associated Press getting the start was the best Christmas present he has ever received. The 49ers would probably second that emotion.
49ers fans will not see their old friend Isaac Bruce Sunday. ProFootballTalk.com is reporting that Bruce will not play anymore this year, and is likely to call it a career.
But we will see our old friend Julian Peterson. Remember him? He's now a Detroit Lion. Matt Maiocco of the Santa Rosa Press Democrat tweets that Peterson has had a "just OK" season with the Lions. "He's started 12 of 14 games, 4.5 sacks, 4 passes defensed, 4 forced fumbles," Maiocco observes.
The 49ers will hope to hand Peterson another statistic -- a 20th consecutive road loss for his team. The NFL record for consecutive road losses is 24.
And that record was set by -- guess who? -- the Detroit Lions, from 2001-2003.