49ers place Bruce Miller on injured reserve, sign Will Tukuafu

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49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said earlier this week that the shoulder injury suffered by fullback Bruce Miller last Sunday “didn’t look good” and the 49ers made a move confirming that assessment on Wednesday.

Miller has been placed on injured reserve, ending a season that saw him become a useful piece of the offense as both a receiver and a blocker. With Michael Crabtree and Mario Manningham back in action, the 49ers will likely miss him more in the latter role in the coming weeks.

When Harbaugh said that Miller’s injury was a serious one, he said that the team would take a look at Owen Marecic, who played for Harbaugh at Stanford, as a replacement but, per Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News, Marecic chose not to come. Another familiar face will be taking Miller’s roster spot.

The team has re-signed Will Tukuafu, who spent the last two seasons with the 49ers and opened the season on the 53-man roster before being released after the opening week. Tukuafu saw most of his time on the defensive line and special teams, but the team experimented with him as a fullback as well.