Posted by Will Brinson
Frank Gore was -- surprise, surprise -- the focal point of the 49ers offense on their first drive in Arizona (make sure to follow the game live here), but after Shane Andrus missed a field goal wide right, the Cardinals took the field and Gore was seen jogging to the locker room.
He has some sort of hip injury and his return is questionable -- the best guess is that it occurred on a missed pass when he bobbled a ball and Paris Lenon tattooed him.
Gore's clearly the staple of San Francisco's offense, and he had 43 yards on just four carries during the first drive, but the Niners appeared not to need him (at least immediately anyway), because after Derek Anderson and Beanie Wells fumbled a handoff, Troy Smith hooked up with Michael Crabtree for a quick touchdown.
Update (9:07): Gore's already back in the game -- he missed just one Cardinals possession, and he picked up 10 yards on his first play back, so it would seem like there's nothing too seriously wrong with him. Although it'd be shocking to see the Niners pull him in this must-win, Brian Westbrook was in the backfield on the first down after Gore's run.
Update (9:12): Apparently Gore IS hurt, because according to Michelle Tafoya, Gore came to the sidelines shaking his head as if he wasn't able to keep playing, and now Brian Westbrook is getting the red zone carries.
Update (10:00): It sure does appear as if Gore's done for the evening -- it's halftime and he hasn't returned to the game. Meanwhile, Westbrook's getting all the carries and the Niners hold a 15-point lead, so it seems logical that San Francisco would keep him out if he's really hurting.
Update (10:20): One three-and-out into the second half by the Cardinals and Frank Gore has been declared officially out. Too bad -- it looked like there might be some drama (albeit fantasy-related) to this game.
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