49ers QB Brock Purdy, dealing with elbow injury, leaves and re-enters NFC title game

PHILADELPHIA — San Francisco 49ers rookie quarterback Brock Purdy re-entered the NFC championship game on Sunday in the third quarter after departing with an injured right elbow.

On the 49ers' first drive of the game and team already trailing 7-0, Purdy dropped back on a second-down pass attempt. Philadelphia Eagles edge rusher Haason Reddick came off the edge and drilled Purdy before he could release the ball, and what was originally ruled an incomplete pass was overturned to a fumble following a review.

Journeyman backup Josh Johnson came in for the Niners' second drive of the game, which resulted in a punt. Johnson was pulled from the game early in the third quarter and ruled out with a concussion, and Purdy came back in to run Kyle Shanahan's offense.

“My arm felt like it stretched out, a lot of shocks all over from my elbow down to my wrist, front and back, pain all over,” Purdy said. “I couldn’t throw more than 5, 10 yards.”

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Purdy stayed out for nearly two quarters prior to his return. After taking the hit, he went into the injury tent for examination but walked toward the San Francisco bench, while Johnson continued throwing on the sidelines.

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy walks with a trainer on the sideline during the first half of the NFC championship game.

Johnson was signed in December, once Purdy assumed the starting role from the injured Jimmy Garoppolo, who was supposed to be the backup for the 2022 season. Second-year quarterback Trey Lance, who had been tabbed to be the starter, broke his ankle in the second game of the season. Garoppolo started from then until Week 13 prior to suffering a broken foot.

Purdy was the first rookie to win his first seven games of his career and was trying to become the first rookie quarterback to advance to the Super Bowl.

“I had a feeling that when he was taken out of the game and wasn’t returning that it was probably something pretty severe, which is very unfortunate because the kid has played his (expletive) off for eight or nine weeks and has played lights out," 49ers right tackle Mike McGlinchey said. "He deserved a moment to go play at the world’s highest stage in our sport.”

Earlier in the game, 49ers linebacker Fred Warner suffered a stinger and was momentarily on the ground writhing in pain. He walked off the field on his own and returned.

Contributing: Associated Press 

Follow Chris Bumbaca on Twitter @BOOMbaca.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Brock Purdy injury updates: 49ers QB returns despite elbow injury