San Francisco 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said yesterday that he expects defensive lineman Justin Smith, who’s recovering from a partially torn triceps, to play this weekend when the team takes on the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Divisional playoffs, reports Steve Corkran of The Contra Costa Times.
"God willing and the creek don't rise, he's going to play," Harbaugh said of Smith, who missed the final two regular-season games with a partially torn triceps tendon.
Smith sustained his injury during a Dec. 16 matchup against the New England Patriots. While the partial triceps tear will require offseason surgery, Smith vowed to return to play during the postseason.
Smith is participating at a full capacity at practice instead of going no-contact leading up to this weekend’s game. He is and will continue to wear a brace on his left arm in an effort to allow him to better play through and protect his injury.
Smith will be a welcome return for the 49ers, who have struggled defensively in his absence. The 12-year pro had 66 tackles and three sacks this season for San Francisco.