Kyle Shanahan excited to add veteran Randy Gregory, won’t suit up for Week 5

Oct 6, 2023, 2:57 PM | Updated: 3:29 pm

Randy Gregory #5 of the Denver Broncos reacts after a play during the first half against the San Fr...

Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images

The San Francisco 49ers have officially acknowledged the acquisition of defensive end Randy Gregory, with Kyle Shanahan doing so Friday.

The 49ers’ coach gave his first thoughts on the reported deal with Denver, elated to add another piece to the puzzle on the defensive line. Having success with mid-season DL trades in the past (Jordan Willis, Charles Omenihu), the Red & Gold hope that Gregory can be the cherry on top of the team’s pass rush moving forward.

“We love the tape. I know he’s messed up at times in the past, but from the type of person I’ve been told that he is we’re really excited to have him here,” Kyle Shanahan told the media Friday about his new player.

The high-caliber role player comes with some baggage however, both on and off the field.

Gregory, 30, missed the 2019 season due to suspension, violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy. He was way for the Dallas Cowboys for a year and a half, making his return to the field in Week 7 of the 2022 season.

He has also had some bad luck with injuries recently. After signing a five-year deal with the Denver Broncos in 2022, the pass rusher suffered a knee injury that derailed the rest of season. Through four contests in 2023, he has nine combined tackles and one sack.

Despite all that, the 49ers and Shanahan are thrilled to add him to the roster. While the behavioral problems were concerning, the Red & Gold will look to keep Gregory focused under the umbrella of their system.


“You always judge a guy when you get to know him and it’s our first time to do it. But also, there’s a lot of people I know really well that speak extremely high of him, and it’s very consistent. So, I’m excited about the person we got, the character of the guy,” Shanahan stated.

It also helps that the move is extremely low-risk, with the Broncos taking on the remaining $14 million of salary for this season. Additionally, Gregory has no guaranteed money on the remaining three years of his contract, making it even more worthwhile for Kyle Shanahan.

“That’s why we felt extremely good about it,” the coach explained. “Just having to flip the sixth and seventh [round draft picks] and not hurt anything money-wise. So, we felt fortunate to add him to our team.”

Recording 19.5 sacks in his career, the 49ers hope Gregory can become a stellar rotation piece opposite Nick Bosa on the edge. And while it may take a few weeks to get right under defensive line coach Kris Kocurek, the team is fired up to add a player of his caliber in the trenches.

“He’s everything that we’re about. A guy who plays like his hair is on fire. A guy who plays 100 percent until the final whistle,” left tackle Trent Williams said about Gregory.

Unfortunately, Gregory will not be available for the 49ers’ clash with his former club, the Dallas Cowboys, this weekend. He will return to Denver for the weekend and re-join San Francisco on Monday. To make room, San Francisco has released DL Kerry Hyder Jr. from the team.

Week 5 Injury Report

Kyle Shanahan also relayed Friday that the 49ers will be without running back Elijah Mitchell for Week 5, dealing with a knee injury.

Mitchell, 25, has struggled with lower body injuries since last season, playing in only five regular-season contests in 2022. This time around, The lower-body ailment kept the talented ballcarrier away from the team last Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals, and will do the same this weekend as well.

The 49ers have also listed backup guard/center Jon Feliciano as questionable for Week 5. The offensive lineman has been in concussion protocol all week.

All other active 49ers have been cleared to play versus the Cowboys Sunday, including linebacker Dre Greenlaw (ankle) and cornerback Charvarius Ward (heel).

Click here to read more on the Randy Gregory trade.

Upcoming San Francisco 49ers Schedule

  • Sunday, October 8th vs. Dallas Cowboys – 5:20 PM PST
  • Sunday, October 15th @ Cleveland Browns – 10:00 AM PST
  • M0nday, October 23rd @ Minnesota Vikings – 5:15 PM PST
  • Sunday, October 29th vs. Cincinnati Bengals – 1:25 PM PST
  • Sunday, November 12th @ Jacksonville Jaguars – 10:00 AM PST

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