SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Injured 49ers center Daniel Kilgore stood at his locker Wednesday, firmly believing he's ready to play should the team add him to the active roster in time for Sunday's game in Chicago.
"It’s based on their call, their judgement. If they think I’m good enough to go, I’m good enough to go. From my perspective, I’m good enough to go," Kilgore said. "There’s no soreness, I’m ready to go."
Kilgore missed all of training camp and the first 11 games of the season after suffering a lower leg fracture midway through 2014 in a loss to the Denver Broncos. The injury required a second surgery in June which prolonged his recovery time by at least four months.
After opening the season on the reserve/physically unable to perform list, the 49ers opened Kilgore's practice window two weeks ago, ahead of the game Nov. 22 in Seattle. They have until Monday, Dec. 7, the day after the Bears game, to add him to the active roster or shut him down for the season. Kilgore said when his practice window opened, he thought the game against Arizona would be a reasonable time frame to get back into the lineup.
"I feel great. Ready for it," Kilgore said. "Ball’s in their court, really."
Under head coach Jim Tomsula, San Francisco has typically been very conservative when it comes to players' health. Kilgore's situation appears to be no different. He says he's ready to go, but hasn't heard one way or another from the coaching staff or the front office.
Tomsula said last week he liked the direction Kilgore was going after two weeks of practice.
"He took most, if not all of the scout team reps. Getting out there, moving around and working his combinations and took a few with the offense," Tomsula said. "We’ll get him working back in there this week. But again, I don’t want to say exactly. We’ll see how it goes. We’re on the ramp up.”
The 49ers' offense still ranks last in the NFL in both scoring and yardage with Blaine Gabbert as the quarterback over the last three games. The offensive line has struggled in Kilgore's absence, with second-year player Marcus Martin at center. But the line has improved with Andrew Tiller at right guard, who replaced the struggling Jordan Devey.
Tiller spent four weeks rotating with Devey before finally taking over the starting job. If and when Kilgore returns, he's unsure if he'll be eased back into the fold in a similar fashion, or if he will be plugged back into the starting lineup and take all the reps from the jump.
"I think, from their perspective, they’re concerned with that week of preparation. If they can get me in, they can get me in. I don’t know. I haven’t really had that conversation with coaches or any of the staff," Kilgore said.
--Outside linebacker Ahmad Brooks has cleared the NFL's concussion protocol after missing last week's game against the Cardinals, the 49ers said Wednesday. Brooks was a limited participant in practice while he also deals with a foot injury. He was in a regular practice jersey, not a blue non-contact jersey he sported last week before the Arizona game.
--Running back Carlos Hyde, linebacker NaVorro Bowman and linebacker Michael Wilhoite all missed practice Wednesday. Hyde remains day to day with his foot injury, although no timetable has been given for his return. Bowman received the regular Wednesday off. Wilhoite is working through an ankle injury, although it doesn't appear to be serious.