There aren't too many surprises for the San Francisco 49ers as they head into the Mercedes-Benz Superdome with a vastly different roster than that of their 2019 matchup.
As noted by head coach Kyle Shanahan heading into the weekend, the 49ers enter Sunday's contest without Deebo Samuel, who will miss his third-straight game with a hamstring injury. Last year, Samuel registered 109 total yards in the Week 14 matchup as a threat through the air and on the ground.
Raheem Mostert, who notched two touchdowns in the contest, is also out for Sunday while working his way back from an ankle injury. Meanwhile, George Kittle, who was recognized as the hero of the down-to-the-wire thriller with his 4th-and-2 reception that led to the game-winning field goal, is likely to miss several weeks with a foot injury.
Instead, the Saints will see new faces in Brandon Aiyuk, Jerick McKinnon and Jordan Reed with San Francisco's starters sidelined and are likely to see a bulk of the offensive snaps with Nick Mullens under center. Receivers River Cracraft (quad) and Trent Taylor (back) were questionable heading into the weekend, however, both have been cleared for the contest.
The 49ers will also be without Tevin Coleman (knee) and K'Waun Williams (ankle) who were on hand during last year's tilt. Ahkello Witherspoon, who started opposite Richard Sherman last year, is a healthy-scratch for the second-straight game. The 49ers will continue to look to Jason Verrett and Emmanuel Moseley at corner.
As for the Saints, former 49ers linebacker Kwon Alexander will make his debut with his new team after a trade earlier this month. Alexander had missed three games with San Francisco after suffering a high-ankle sprain in Week 5. The linebacker was a full participant this week at practice.
Here's a full look at who's in and who's out for Sunday:
- RB Dwayne Washington (back)
- CB Ken Crawley
- LB Chase Hansen
- OL Derrick Kelly
- DE Carl Granderson