The 49ers on Wednesday officially opened the practice window for running back Elijah Mitchell, clearing his way to return from IR for a second time this season.
Mitchell has been out since spraining his MCL in Week 12 against the Saints. It was his second IR stint of the year. He also spent X weeks on the injured list because of an MCL sprain he sustained in his opposite knee in Week 1.
It’s unclear whether the 49ers plan to activate the RB for their Week 18 matchup with the Cardinals, or if they’ll wait until the postseason. The club has plenty of time to make their decision. They’re allotted 21 days to decide whether to activate him or place him on season-ending IR. That gives them until the Wednesday before the NFC championship game, and it stands to reason their decision will come well before then.
Once Mitchell is activated the 49ers will no longer be able to bring players back from IR. League rules allow clubs to return eight players from IR per season, and Mitchell will be their eighth re-activation.
This season in four games Mitchell has 40 carries for 224 yards. In the three games he played with Christian McCaffrey he put up 34 of those carries and 183 of the yards.