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NFL Week 15 Injury Updates: 49ers Hurting Inside

The 49ers are hurting inside, it's true. It wasn't a bad breakup or the sudden discovery that Jason Cole and his inside sources are cheating on them with the Raiders across the bay. It's their inside linebackers, they've got a couple injuries to be worried about. Joe Nedney and Joe Staley remain out, with the usual replacements of Jeff Reed and Barry Sims stepping in once again. But, this game against the San Diego Chargers is a crucial one, and their top two leading tacklers are presently in jeopardy with hand injuries.

Both Patrick Willis and Takeo Spikes are officially "banged up." They both suffered hand injuries in the 49ers dominating 40-21 win over the rival Seattle Seahawks. They both deferred discussion regarding their injures, and they're both listed as questionable on the official injury report. Backup NaVorro Bowman, is also listed as questionable with a hamstring injury and is expected to play. It's unlikely both Spikes and Willis would be unable to play, and it's slightly less, but still unlikely, that either would be absent. Hand injuries are manageable, just ask Willis himself.

San Diego fares a little bit better than San Francisco at this point. Wide receiver Patrick Crayton and linebacker Larry English are both out, while star tight end Antonio Gates is listed as doubtful. Gates has yet to practice following the Chargers' win over the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. He's a primary target for San Diego and would definitely be missed. Wide receiver Malcolm Floyd went from limited participation to no participation from Tuesday to Wednesday and could be another target out for the Chargers. He's listed as questionable.

Niners Nation has the full, final injury report.