Amil’s 53-Man Roster Projection for the 49ers

Aug 29, 2022, 11:36 AM | Updated: 1:11 pm

Charles Omenihu #94 of the San Francisco 49ers during training camp at the SAP Performance Facility...

SANTA CLARA, CA - AUGUST 1: Charles Omenihu #94 of the San Francisco 49ers during training camp at the SAP Performance Facility on August 1, 2022 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images)

(Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images)

Following the San Francisco 49ers’ preseason contests, the team is now faced with the one of the toughest days in the NFL calendar: 53-man roster day.

Head coach Kyle Shanahan and the front office have until 1 p.m. Pacific Tuesday to make their final cuts to the roster, going from 80 men to 53 in short time.

The team has already made a few moves to clear up spots, cutting cornerbacks Ka’Dar Hollman and Ken Crawley Sunday and Monday.

With less than 24 hours until the final roster is due, let’s take a look at who’s in and who’s out.


On the 53-man roster (2): Trey Lance, Nate Sudfeld

Not making the cut: Brock Purdy

Other: Jimmy Garoppolo

Trey Lance and Nate Sudfeld have always been the quarterbacks that Shanahan has wanted to keep, especially with a $2 million guaranteed on the latter’s contract. That’s not to discredit rookie Brock Purdy, whose impressed with his accuracy and poise during the preseason.

The Iowa State alum threw an interception late in the preseason finale against the Texans last Thursday. That should be enough to slip Purdy through waivers and onto the practice squad this season.

It’s astonishing that Jimmy Garoppolo is still on the 49ers roster at the 53-man deadline, given how much the team has wanted to trade him this offseason.

But alas here we are.

There could be a trade that develops in the next 24 hours, but that remains unlikely. The 49ers are facing a decision to cut Jimmy G and save over $25 million on their books, but that move allows the highest bidder (Seattle Seahawks) to pick him up without giving draft compensation.

A horrible outcome given Garoppolo’s talent and record as an NFL starter.

Running Back

On the 53-man roster (5): Elijah Mitchell, Kyle Juszczyk (FB), Ty Davis-Price, Jeff Wilson Jr., Trey Sermon

Not making the cut:  JaMychal Hasty, Jordan Mason

If it was up to me, Trey Sermon would not be one of the 53.

Hasty has had a better camp and been more of a viable option in the passing game for Shanahan. We discussed this last week but if not for a third-round pick and big school potential, players like undrafted rookie Jordan Mason would be getting the opportunity over Sermon.

With that said, Sermon has had a good camp and improved in Year 2, allowing Shanahan and the front office the ease to keep him on the roster for now.

The rest of the starters are set as all five will see action on a varied basis for the regular season. Mitchell is the No.1 de facto halfback and is set to return in time for week 1 in Chicago. Juszczyk and Deebo Samuel will also see some touches in the backfield as the offensive playbook is geared for multiple looks and different runners each series.

Mason will be on the practice squad after impressing throughout camp, and Hasty will be looking for a new home for the 2022 season.

Wide Receiver

On the 53-man roster (5): Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, Jauan Jennings, Ray-Ray McCloud, Danny Gray

Not making the cut: Malik Turner, Willie Snead, Marcus Johnson, Tay Martin

The starting five has felt set since the final week of training camp, with Gray and McCloud primed for work in the return game this season. Samuel, Aiyuk and Jennings will be the trio on the field but don’t be surprised to see Gray climb up the depth chart, thanks to his elite speed and vertical threat.

The others were brought in for depth and practice players during the regular season, nothing more.

Tight End

On the 53-man roster (4): George Kittle, Charlie Woerner, Ross Dwelley, Tyler Kroft

Not making the cut: Troy Fumagalli

Injured reserve: Jordan Matthews (knee)

The 49ers love running two-TE sets which is why they’ll house four players at then position.

Besides Kittle, the three others are vying for game time as all have had up and downs during preseason play. Kroft is currently listed as the No.2 on the depth chart but the backup to Kittle is pretty wide open right now.

Unfortunately, Fumagalli will be looking for a new home and Matthews tore his ACL early on in training camp. A tough blow for a former standout pass catcher.

Offensive Line

On the 53-man roster (9): Trent Williams, Aaron Banks, Daniel Brunskill, Spencer Burford, Mike McGlinchey, Jake Brendel, Colton McKivitz, Jaylon Moore, Jason Poe

Not making the cut: Nick Zakelj, Justin Skule, Keaton Sutherland, Dohnovan West, Alfredo Gutierrez

Too many times has Skule let the 49ers down in practice and preseason, allowing pressures and sacks through all three exhibitions games. The staff that broke the camel’s back was last Thursday in Houston, as the entire backup offensive line was like a turnstile in the New York subway system.

Some will join the practice squad, including international player Gutierrez. The others will be looking for new teams.

The starters have pretty much been set since the beginning of training camp, with the biggest rise coming from rookie RG Spencer Burford. He’s the best prospect the 49ers have on the offensive line as there look to develop another “diamond in the rough” to replace the guard play of Laken Tomlinson long-term.

Defensive Line

On the 53-man roster (10): Nick Bosa, Arik Armstead, Javon Kinlaw, Samson Ebukam, Drake Jackson, Kevin Givens, Charles Omenihu, Kemoko Turay, Jordan Willis, Hassan Ridgeway

Not making the cut: Kerry Hyder Jr., Kevin Atkins, Alex Barrett, Akeem Spence

Reserve/NFI: Kalia Davis (knee)

Injured reserve: Maurice Hurst (biceps)

The deepest area of the field for the Red & Gold sees the team keep ten players on the defensive line.

All have performed well in the preseason, including USC rookie Drake Jackson, whose likely to play a pivotal swing rusher role for the 49ers this year.

The final roster spot comes down to Hassan Ridgeway and Kerry Hyder Jr.

My vote is for the former, proving good pressure on early downs as a run stuffer during the preseason. The team could also opt to keep 11 men, but that means sacrificing another player in a less deep position.


On the 53-man roster (5): Fred Warner, Dre Greenlaw, Azeez Al-Shaair, Oren Burks, Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles
Not making the cut:
Marcelino McCrary-Ball, Segun Olubi, Curtis Robinson

Not much more to it: Warner, Greenlaw and Al-Shaair make up one of the best linebacker groups in the NFL.

Oren Burks was a preseason captain and can provide depth behind those three. Flannigan-Fowles has been solid in preseason and training camp, giving him the nod over the others.

McCray-Ball is an interesting player for the team’s practice squad and could see some game time if injuries plague the group.

Defensive Back/Safety

On the 53-man roster (10): Charvarius “Mooney” Ward, Emmanuel Moseley, Tashaun Gipson Sr., Talanoa Hufanga, Tarvarius Moore, Deommodore Lenoir, Ambry Thomas, Samuel Womack III, George Odum, Dontae Johnson

Not making the cut: Tariq Castro-Fields, Qwuantrezz Knight, Taylor Hawkins

Reserve/PUP: Jason Verrett, Jimmie Ward

With Jimmie Ward going on the PUP list to start the regular season, the signing of Gipson makes so much more sense for a long-term view. The team could also go back out into the market (looking at you Jaquiski Tartt), but for now the 49ers are content with their group of guys.

Mooney and Moseley will serve as the starting two cornerbacks while rookie Samuel Womack will be the starting nickleback. The fifth-round pick has impressed the most this preseason, coming up with a huge PBU in the end zone against the Texans, resulting in an interception for the 49ers.

Among the cuts, “Q-Knight” is the most likely to have a chance at a roster spot and could very well find his way to the practice squad.

Special Teams

On the 53-man roster (3): Robbie Gould, Mitch Wishnowsky, Taybor Pepper

Nothing to see here, this won’t change unless injury befalls one of them.


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