- Bill Williamson, ESPN Staff Writer
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SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- There's a long list of injured San Francisco 49ers that are coming back to the team for the stretch run.
There is one more player, however, who is also rehabilitating with an eye on returning to the practice field who shouldn't be forgotten -- running back Marcus Lattimore.
The rookie from South Carolina will not be counted on to play until next year, but he is hoping to be able to practice this season. But there is little chance he will be activated to play. The 49ers are taking a conservative approach with Lattimore and want him to be ready for next season.
Lattimore was taken in the fourth round of the April draft. He was widely considered as one of the best running backs in the draft. However, last October, he suffered a dislocated right kneecap and three torn knee ligaments.
“I know the team is thinking about the future, but it would be very important for me to practice this year,” Lattimore said Tuesday. “Everything is going well and that would be an important step.”