After Brief Return, Joe Staley May be Out Again

Niners' veteran left tackle suffered a fractured finger in OT loss to Seattle Monday night and may have to undergo surgery

It appears the 49ers have lost left tackle Joe Staley – again.

Staley returned to the field Monday night after missing six games with a leg fracture suffered in the season’s second game. But in Monday’s return, a 27-24 overtime loss to the Seahawks, Staley injured a finger and could miss two or more weeks, beginning with this Sunday’s game against the Arizona Cardinals.

According to the 49ers, Staley suffered a finger fracture and dislocation and is expected to have surgery.

Staley fought through the pain to stay in the game, playing all 88 offensive snaps. It’s a tough break for both Staley and the 49ers. The veteran left tackle, a perennial Pro Bowl candidate, is the anchor of the 49ers offensive line. He suffered a fractured fibula in Week 2. Then the 49ers lost their other starting tackle on the right side, Mike McGlinchey, and had to go with a pair of backups at the positions for several weeks.

On Monday, Staley and McGlinchey both returned. Justin Skule on the left side and Daniel Brunskill, on the right, played well in their absence, but the Niners know they’re better with Staley and McGlinchey in the lineup.

Said head coach Kyle Shanahan Monday, of Staley’s new injury: “He got out of the game fine with his leg, but he ended up having a finger fracture/dislocation. Right now he’s getting a second opinion on it and we’ll have more on that tomorrow, but surgery is a possibility.”

In Monday night’s loss to Seattle, both Staley and McGlinchey appeared rusty, and were often beaten by Seahawks defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, who had a big night with a sack, five quarterback hits, five tackles, a forced fumble and a touchdown off a fumble recovery. He also had 11 quarterback pressures.

The 49ers, now 8-1, will take on the 3-6-1 Cardinals Sunday at Levi’s Stadium. Kickoff is set for 1:05 p.m.

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