CHARLOTT, North Carolina. The good news for the battered San Francisco 49ers is as much as the bad: they’ve been through this before.

The Niners left the Bank of America Stadium on Sunday with a landslide 37-15 win over the Carolina Panthers to open the junior season 3-2 and take the top spot in the NFC West. It was the type of dominant win that usually leaves a lot of things to smile about in the dressing room.

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But that wasn’t the case on Sunday as the Niners watched four key players — cornerback Emmanuel Moseley, defenseman Nick Boza, defenseman Jimmy Ward and kicker Robbie Gould — walk away with varying degrees of injury. It was the latest wave of injuries this young season as the Niners lost important players such as quarterback Tray Lance (ankle), left tackle Trent Williams (ankle), linebackers Arik Armstead (foot, ankle) and Javon Kinlaw (knee). running back Elijah Mitchell (knee) and linebacker Aziz Al-Shair (knee), among others, for extended periods.

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On Monday, the Niners confirmed that Moseley had torn the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. Boza struggles with a tight groin while Ward faces surgery on a broken left arm and Gould struggles with a bruised left knee. The Nines keep an eye on every injury, expecting everyone but Moseley to come back at some point relatively soon.

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“It’s tough,” quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo said. “It’s football so you have to take it with a grain of salt, but it’s all there, it’s a cramped dressing room and it sucks when we lose a guy like that… We have to keep going and the train doesn’t stop.”

No one knows this better than the Niners, who have suffered more injuries than they should have in recent seasons.

In 2019 and 2021, the 49ers have proven they are capable of overcoming their injury problems by drawing on their depth to keep winning. Both seasons ended in deep playoff draws, with the Niners winning the NFC Championship to qualify for Super Bowl LIV in 2019 and advancing to the NFC Title Game in 2021.

In 2018 and 2020, there wasn’t enough depth in the roster (or on the planet) to help San Francisco overcome the injury issues that plagued them. These seasons ended with an overall record of 10-22.

That means the question that will be most important in determining San Francisco’s 2022 season is this: which path will he take when dealing with yet another long list of injuries?

“We know we’ve been in those situations and we’ve worked our way out of them,” defenseman Kyle Yuschik said. “So I feel like maybe it just gives you a little comfort in knowing that we’ve done this before and we can get out of this again.”

If there’s any consolation to the Niners’ long list of injuries, it’s that many of their ailments aren’t considered season-ending. Lance will not return due to a broken right ankle and Moseley will also miss the rest of the season. Otherwise, the Nines expect to bring back the rest of their key players at some point.

Yuschik recalls a similar situation in 2019, when he, tight end George Kittle and tackles Joe Staley and Mike McGlinchey were among a large group of players who were eliminated but returned in time to shore up the squad just before a tough three-game stretch against the Greens. “. Bay Packers, Baltimore Ravens and New Orleans Saints.

“I think there’s definitely something to it,” Yuschik said. “I think it takes a lot to get players back in the starting line-up mid-year, at the end of the year and fresh. Of course, they recover from injuries, which is not the best. But if we can still weather the storm and win games now and get them back fresh, ready to go, I think that could really bode well for the end of the season because it’s been a really long year. It’s almost impossible for everyone to have a healthy season.”

The Nines have already had to go deep into their positions in several positions, meaning they can’t afford more losses. Reinforcements should be on the way relatively soon, though probably not in large numbers, at least for another couple of weeks. This means the remaining healthy Nines must hold the fort to ensure that when their injured teammates return, they still have plenty of games to play.

“You don’t want to know how to handle big losses,” linebacker Fred Warner said. “As easy as it is to say the next player is ahead, we don’t think about these guys, you know? And we miss them. But we’re going to find a way to get through this and keep playing at a high level.”