SANTA CLARA — The league’s No. 1 pass defense will be missing several starters Sunday when the 49ers (11-2) host the Atlanta Falcons (4-9).
Defensive end Dee Ford (hamstring), cornerback Richards Sherman (hamstring), strong safety Jaquiski Tartt (ribs), defensive tackle Jullian Taylor (elbow) and nickel back K’Waun Williams (concussion) were ruled out after none practiced this week.
Nose tackle D.J. Jones (ankle) is also out and will go on injured reserve Saturday. Defensive tackle Kentavius Street is expected to come off injured reserve and make his NFL debut.
Coach Kyle Shanahan did not confirm a NFL Network report earlier Friday claiming that Sherman is out through the final three games of the regular season.
Said Shanahan: “I hope it’s week to week. That’s news to me”
Sherman said Thursday that, despite his strained right hamstring, he reached 20 mph in individual conditioning and could play Sunday, if needed.
The 49ers indeed could need Sherman and all others once they get to their regular-season finale at Seattle, where the Seahawks could be positioned to dethrone them for the NFC’s No. 1 seed and home-field advantage through the playoffs.
Ford’s status remains up in the air after aggravating a hamstring last game. NFL Network reported that Ford is our four weeks, and Shanahan would not confirm that but acknowledged it’s a possibility because of hamstring-injury timelines.
— For Friday’s practice, the 49ers pulled out their 1984 team’s single “We’re the 49ers,” to which several players danced while some wondered what era this vintage chorus of players came from. That 1984 team won the team’s second Lombardi Trophy and went 18-1. Their third-to-last game that regular season: a 35-17 win over the Falcons.
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