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Niners DL Arik Armstead says he played through postseason with torn meniscus, will undergo surgery

San Francisco 49ers defensive lineman Arik Armstead played through a knee injury during the postseason that he said on Tuesday will require offseason surgery.

Armstead told reporters that he suffered a right meniscus injury initially in Week 13 during the 49ers' 42-19 win over the Philadelphia Eagles on Dec. 3, missing the final five regular-season games. He was listed on the pre-Super Bowl injury report with foot and knee ailments.

Armstead said his knee will need surgery in the coming days. His hope is to return healthy sometime around training camp. Niners general manager John Lynch added later on Tuesday that defensive lineman Javon Hargrave finished the season playing with a torn thumb ligament. 

Armstead returned to start all three postseason games, racking up 11 tackles, one sack, one fumble recovery while playing 152 of a possible 218 defensive snaps (69.7%).

Even though the Niners lost the game, Amstead's lone sack came at a critical time in Super Bowl LVIII. He took down Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes on third down at the San Francisco 9-yard line in the waning moments of the first half, with the 49ers leading, 10-0. After the sack, the Chiefs opted to kick a field goal, cutting the lead to 10-3.

In the 49ers' NFC Championship Game win over the Lions, Armstead made another game-changing play with his recovery of Jahmyr Gibbs' fumble, kicking San Francisco's comeback into high gear.

The 49ers tied the game with a touchdown four plays after the fumble and went on to beat the Lions.

The 30-year-old defensive lineman finished the regular season with 27 tackles (four for losses), five sacks and 13 QB hits in 12 starts. Armstead is under contract through 2024, carrying a salary-cap hit of nearly $28.4 million next season. According to Next Gen Stats, Armstead generated a 11.2% QB pressure rate in the regular season, which was his highest since 2019, beating double-teams a team-high 46.2% of his snaps. The 49ers generated a 46.6% pressure rate with Armstead on field this season, compared to 33.7% without him, including the playoffs

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