(NEW YORK) — The injuries are piling up for the San Francisco 49ers as cornerback Chris Culliver will miss the entire 2013 season after suffering a torn left ACL.
After 45 mintues into Thursday’s practice session, Culliver was covering a punt when he went down to the ground in pain. It was a non-contact drill, but the damage had been done.
Culliver was the team’s third cornerback, which in today’s pass-happy NFL, is an important role on the team.
“What it means right now is there are some guys getting an opportunity to show what they can do, which is a positive there,” 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh said. “And there’s people who have been doing that.
A former third-round pick out of South Carolina, Culliver recorded 47 tackles, two forced fumbles, and two interceptions in 2013.
Culliver’s injury is just the latest blow to a hurting Niners’ roster. The team is already dealing with an injury to wide receiver Michael Crabtree. To make matters worse, All-Pro linebacker Patrick Willis suffered a “slight fracture” in his right hand.
Last season, the 49ers had the third overall ranked defense in the NFL in 2012.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
John Newsome and Anne Woolsey, CNN