Jimmy Garoppolo injured thumb vs. Titans

It sounds like Jimmy Garoppolo’s thumb injury is worse than a sprain.

Shortly after the San Francisco 49ers announced that their quarterback had sustained a sprained thumb on his throwing hand, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that he has a chipped bone and torn ligament in the injured thumb.

Garoppolo suffered the injury during the first half of Thursday’s loss to the Tennessee Titans.

Head coach Kyle Shanahan initially revealed the injury on Monday, telling reporters that Garoppolo sustained a “sprain” while being being sacked in the second quarter. He said that Garoppolo might be able to play on Sunday against the Houston Texans, but that his condition will need to improve. He missed practice on Monday.

“We’ll see how it is Wednesday,” Shanahan said. “Hopefully it gets better.”

The injury appeared to take place during this sack by Titans defensive end Denico Autry that drove Garoppolo into the turf:

Shanahan: Injury impacted Garoppolo’s play

Shanahan told reporters that a third-quarter interception thrown by Garoppolo was impacted by the thumb injury. Garoppolo threw two interceptions in the 20-17 loss while completing 26-of-35 pass attempts for 322 yards with a touchdown. 

He threw his first interception into the end zone prior to his thumb injury, thwarting a likely 49ers scoring drive. His second interception set up a Titans touchdown. He also missed a wide open Kyle Juszczyk in the first quarter on a deep pass that would have likely resulted in a touchdown if successful. That miss took place before his thumb injury.

Jimmy Garoppolo appeared to injure his thumb on this sack by Denico Autry. OChristopher Hanewinckel/Reuters)

Will Trey Lance start in heat of playoff race?

If Garoppolo can’t play against the Texans, then rookie Trey Lance is next on the depth chart. The No. 3 pick in April’s draft hasn’t thrown a pass since a Week 5 start against the Arizona Cardinals in place of an injured Garoppolo. He’s completed 25-of-48 passes (52.1%) for 354 yards with three touchdowns and one interception in limited action.

The 49ers dropped to 8-7 with Thursday’s loss. With five playoff spots clinched in the NFC, the 49ers would make the playoffs as the No. 6 seed if the postseason started this week. They finish their season on the road against the NFC West-leading Los Angeles Rams in Week 18 after facing the Texans on Sunday.