Receiver Braylon Edwards said today he's been playing with a sprained AC joint in the last three games. Edwards said he suffered the injury during the team's Week 9 game against the Redskins. After delivering a blow to Washington corerback DeAngelo Hall, Edwards said, he was struck by safety LaRon Landry. (In reviewing the play, Hall is the one who knocks Edwards out of bounds and Edwards appears to land forcefully on his left shoulder).
"Injury means you can't play, but I do have a shoulder 'ailment,' I'll say," Edwards said. "Nothing super serious. But at the same time, it's nagging."
Edwards had two catches for 30 yards against the Redskins. He had three catches for 47 yards the following week against the Giants but only had one catch for five yards in the two games since. Thursday night against Baltimore, a long throw from Alex Smith to Edwards at the end of the half was intercepted in the end zone.
Edwards said he was trying to set the cornerback up with an inside move and then go outside. Smith said he thought Edwards had committed to the inside and threw the ball there. "He saw one thing and I saw another," Edwards said. "That happens from time to time. That probably comes from us not being able be out there together (because of) my injury."
Edwards missed four games earlier this season after suffering a meniscus tear in Week 2.
Edwards said his goal was to be healthy for a likely playoff run. Asked if it would be beneficial to perhaps take a game off to achieve that goal, Edwards said, "We'll see what the doctors say. We'll put that plan in the hands of the doctors and trainers and coach Harbaugh and see what they think. .... But maybe that's what needs to happen."
Said Harbaugh about possibly resting Edwards: "Braylon hasn't said it to me, so I mean it's something I can discuss with Braylon."
Smith said the 49ers offense could use the explosiveness Edwards has shown in previous stops with the Browns and Jets but has not yet shown with the 49ers.
"We weren't able to do it on Thursday," Smith said. "I don't think it was anything to get worked up about, but for sure, you're absolutely right. We need to get him involved, keep him involved. He's such a playmaker, especially downfield."
Jim Harbaugh said he and the team are aware that they can clinch the NFC West with a win over the Rams Sunday but are not looking too far ahead. Said Harbaugh: "We may be ahead on the chip count but we don't have a seat at the final table."
Harbaugh has said he wouldn't decide on whether to rest certain players until December and is sticking to that plan. "We know we're still going to need quite a few (wins)," he said. "This game, the next five, will all be critical."
Fullback Bruce Miller (concussion) said he's been cleared to practice and play. Moran Norris substituted for Miller on Thursday and played well.
-- Matt Barrows