The San Francisco 49ers have known all week that defensive lineman Justin Smith is going to play today.
What they don’t know is how effective the Pro Bowler will be playing with a partially torn triceps in his left arm. But after watching Smith practice all week with his left arm protected by a brace and going against 335-pound backup offensive lineman Leonard Davis, one of Smith’s teammates, safety Donte Whitner, estimated that Smith will be 95 percent of full strength, which if true would be a huge boon for the 49ers.
“When you’re out there and against a big guy like Leonard Davis and you’re pushing him around with both arms, I don’t think you really have a problem,” Whitner told the San Francisco Chronicle. “He’s one of the biggest offensive guards in the National Football league. So to be able to go out there and practice against him all week and be able to control him and move around with both arms, I think Justin showed a lot by doing that.
“I think he’ll be 95 percent … Leonard Davis is a large guy and he’s not out there just pass-setting every play. He’s coming off and Justin has been testing himself and moving him around. He’s been doing a good job all week. The gloves have been off. He’ll be ready for us.”
Said Davis: “As far as percentage-wise, it’s hard to tell. It’s not like we have pads on, so it’s not like we can really go at it. It’s hard to really say … It’s not a walkthrough tempo. It’s not full-speed game tempo. But we’re out there moving quick.”
Smih is listed as probable on the 49ers’ injury report, which means there’s a “virtual certainty” he’ll be available for his normal amount of playing time. The 49ers had 13 players on their injury report, but all are probable.
Defensive tackle Justin Smith, the owner of a now-famous partially torn left triceps, is among 13 players listed as probable on the 49ers’ injury report in advance of Saturday’s divisional-playoff showdown against the Packers.