Report: Aldon Smith could be back early for 49ers

The 49ers defense got torched in Denver last Sunday, but help could be on the way — and soon.

According to a report, suspended linebacker Aldon Smith could be returning as soon as Monday:

Smith was suspended nine games in the offseason for various offseason issues. Smith, NaVorro Bowman and Patrick Willis were all out in a 42-17 loss at Denver last week, but with their linebackers set to come back at various points, the 49ers, according to another report, may be trying to create some roster space.

Bowman has been rehabbing since injuring his knee in the NFC title game loss at Seattle in January. Defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey (biceps) will also return at the end of the season, creating a glut of ex-starters that will return for San Francisco.