SANTA CLARA – Defensive end Nick Bosa is counting on playing the opening game in Detroit on September 12th and is training at camp for the time being as he recovers from last season’s knee injury.
Bosa is one of the few 49ers who are not fully vaccinated, as evidenced by the protective mask he wore to his first press conference since last season on Thursday.
“I’m evaluating everything right now,” said Bosa. “I have not decided yet. But I’ll follow the protocols and I’ll see where it goes. “
# 49ers Nick Bosa says he has not yet decided whether to get a #covid vaccine pic.twitter.com/Ib6Ol59gyW
The 49ers opened camp Tuesday with General Manager John Lynch, who found that over 90 percent of the players were vaccinated. Four attacking players wore masks to warm up for Wednesday’s first practice session, and cornerback Jason Verrett wore a mask in his media session on Thursday as he said he was working things through.
Bosa noted in a long response how “it’s difficult with this mask on,” but this is part of the rules imposed by the NFL, including others restricting unvaccinated players in and out of the team facility, as well daily tests for COVID.
Three players who opened camp on the COVID reservation are cornerback Emmanuel Moseley, Safety Jaquiski Tartt and wide receiver Jauan Jennings.
SANTA CLARA, CA – JULY 29: San Francisco 49ers defensive lineman Nick Bosa (97) participates in an during practice exercise on Thursday, July 29, 2021, in Santa Clara, Calif. (Aric Crabb / Bay Area News Group)
Bosa reported that he was on the right track with his ACL comeback.
When the schedule came out a few months ago for this season, Bosa had his target return date.
“I knew when it was an early injury (last September) I would be mostly ready to start week 1 and now everything is tending to,” said Bosa. “I hope that I can improve it and give everything I have in week one.
He looks very close. During two training sessions at the camp, he did not show any obstacles with his leg, but jumped up after the exercises as if he wanted to test it further or to show his progress.
He wears a black support sleeve over his left knee and participates in positional exercises with block sledges and pseudo-pass rush, then on a sideline with his linemen colleagues Dee Ford (back) and Javon Kinlaw (knee).
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In addition to working to rehabilitate his knee, Bosa has also made changes to his diet with the help of his personal chef this off-season in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
“I munched a ton of green juice and really healthy raw vegetables, salads, and a ton of protein,” Bosa said, noting that he kept his weight at around 260 pounds, about five pounds less than his NFL defensive rookie 2019 of the annual season.
Mentally, Bosa is also in a much better place after going to a “dark place” when his left knee buckled 11 snaps in the 49ers’ street opener against hosts New York Jets last season.
SANTA CLARA, CA – JULY 29: San Francisco 49ers defensive lineman Nick Bosa (97) hugs quarterback Trey Lance (5) during practice on Thursday, July 29, 2021, in Santa Clara, Calif. (Aric Crabb / Bay Area News Group )
“It’s always difficult at the beginning. They come off in 2019 and at the top of the world and start the next season well and everything is gone very quickly, ”said Bosa. “Mentally it was really tough. When your body feels awful, your mind goes to this place. I had my mom and brother looking after me down in LA and I got to hang out with Joey all season
“As my body felt better, my mind followed. I can only work hard. Once you’ve overcome the initial pain, there really is no other option but to come back better. My thoughts went to some dark places, especially when football is a dark place in your life. ”
Bosa noted that his girlfriend helped him get to a happier place and that “she kept me very busy and that helped me.”