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San Francisco 49ers: Projecting the 53-man roster in 2022

Vincent Frank

The San Francisco 49ers roster has to be cut down to 53 here soon. There’s still a lot of decisions that must be made by head coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch.

Will San Francisco roster three quarterbacks? How is its depth chart at running back going to play out? Will the team add another interior lineman to help upgrade what was a terrible unit during the preseason?

As a team that fancies itself as legitimate Super Bowl contenders, the decisions over these next couple days are going to have widespread ramifications heading into Week 1 against the Chicago Bears. Without further ado, we provide you our San Francisco 49ers roster projections with days to go before final cuts. But first, the process has to be a focal point.

Related: San Francisco 49ers schedule and game-by-game predictions

When do teams have to get down to 53 players?

  • Teams cut from 80 down to 53 players on August 30

This means that a total of 850-plus players will either hit the waiver wire or free agency leading up to the Aug. 30 deadline. For a team as deep as San Francisco, we can be sure that they’ll have multiple players picked up off waivers. It also wouldn’t be a surprise if a trade or two took place between now and Tuesday.

There’s also this whole expanded 16-man practice squad. A nice amount of players San Francisco waives will not be picked up by another team and could land on the practice squad. Does that included rookie seventh-round pick Brock Purdy? We’ll find out soon enough.

Related: San Francisco 49ers standing in Sportnaut’s updated NFL power rankings

San Francisco 49ers 53-man roster projection

san francisco 49ers roster
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Here is the link to the 49ers unofficial depth chart, which was revealed on August 10. But that’s not what you’ll find down below. Instead, we’ve come up with our own predictions, knowing that their public chart is set to fluctuate drastically.

Here’s the San Francisco 49ers 53-man roster projection.

QBTrey LanceNate Sudfeld
RBElijah MitchellJeff Wilson Jr.Tyrion Davis-Price (R)Trey Sermon
FBKyle Juszczyk
WRDeebo SamuelDanny Gray (R)
WRBrandon AiyukMalik Turner
WRJauan JenningsRay-Ray McCloud
TEGeorge KittleRoss DwelleyCharlie Woerner
LTTrent WilliamsColton McKivitz
LGAaron BanksJason Poe (R)
CJake BrendelDaniel Brunskill
RGSpencer Burford (R)Jordan Mills
RTMike McGlincheyJaylon Moore
DENick BosaCharles OmenihuKemoko Turay
DTArik ArmsteadKevin Givens
DTJavon KinlawHassan Ridgeway
DESamson EbukamDrake Jackson (R)
LBFred WarnerOren Burks
LBDre GreenlawDemetrius Flannigan-Fowles
LBAzeez Al-Shaair
CBCharvarius WardAmbry Thomas
CBEmmanuel MoseleyTariq Castro-Fields (R)
NBSamuel Womack III (R)Deommodore Lenoir
FSGeorge OdumTarvarius MooreTashaun Gipson
SSTalanoa Hufanga
KRobbie Gould
PMitch Wishnowsky
LSTaybor Pepper
Projected San Francisco 49ers roster

Related: Brandon Aiyuk emerging as standout at San Francisco 49ers training camp

San Francisco 49ers practice squad

NFL: San Francisco 49ers at Minnesota Vikings
Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports
  • QB: Brock Purdy (R)
  • RB: Jordan Mason (R)
  • FB: Josh Hokit
  • WR: Willie Snead IV
  • WR: Marcus Johnson
  • WR: Tay Martin (R)
  • OL: Nick Zakelj (R)
  • OL: Keaton Sutherland
  • TE: Tyler Kroft
  • DL: Kevin Atkins (R)
  • DL: Alex Barrett
  • LB: Curtis Robinson
  • LB: Segun Olubi (R)
  • CB: Qwuantrezz Knight (R)
  • CB: Ken Crawley
  • S: Taylor Hawkins (R)
  • PUP list — CB: Jason Verrett
  • NFI list — DL: Kalia Davis
  • IR — DT: Maurice Hurst
  • IR — TE: Jordan Matthews
  • IR — S: Jimmie Ward (short-term)

As a reminder, the NFL recently changed practice squad eligibility rules, allowing a maximum of six veterans with no limitations to games or seasons accrued. This allows the 49ers to keep veterans like Willie Snead IV and Tyler Kroft.

Cut from the roster:

  • QB: Jimmy Garoppolo
  • RB: JaMycal Hasty
  • TE: Troy Fumagalli
  • OT: Justin Skule
  • DL: Akeem Spence
  • DL: Jordan Willis
  • DL: Kerry Hyder Jr.
  • DB: Dontae Johnson

Related: San Francisco 49ers as legitimate Super Bowl contenders?

San Francisco 49ers roster cut-down decisions

NFL: NFC Championship-San Francisco 49ers at Los Angeles Rams
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
  • QB: The question for San Francisco is whether it will keep three quarterbacks on the active roster. We project that the 49ers will look to hide rookie seventh-round pick Brock Purdy on the practice squad. That seems to be a likelier scenario following his lackluster performance in San Francsico’s preseasonn finale. As for Garoppolo, this situation is coming to a head. The 49ers will be forced to release the Super Bowl quarterback if no trade happens here soon — saving north of $24 million against the cap in the process.
  • RB: Perhaps the deepest positional group on the San Francisco 49ers’ roster, there’s a chance that they look to find a trade partner for Jeff Wilson Jr. If not, he’ll enter Week 1 as RB2 behind Elijah Mitchell. It’s the rest of the running back group that remains on thin ice right now. A third-round pick out of Ohio State last year, Trey Sermon has struggled this summer. In fact, undrafted rookie Jordan Mason has outplayed him. With that said, we’re going with San Francisco keeping Sermon and hoping Mason can be stashed on the practice squad. ]
  • WR: Five of the 49ers’ roster spots at wide receiver are set. Samuel and Aiyuk will be the starters. Either Ray-Ray McCloud or Jauan Jennings will be the starting slot guy with stud rookie Danny Gray as the top boundary receiver. As for the sixth spot, we’re going with veteran Malik Turner primarily due to his ability to play special teams.
  • TE: San Francisco has two veterans in Tyler Kroft and Troy Fumagalli it brought in late in the offseason to challenge for a roster spot. Kroft played well during the preseason. He could unseat either Charlie Woerner or Ross Dwelley on the 53. We’re just not seeing it. Expect him to land on the 49ers’ practice squad.
  • OL: The interior of San Francisco’s offensive line is shaky. Rookie Spencer Burford would be the starting right guard next to unproven center Jake Brendel and second-year left guard Aaron Banks. That’s not ideal with a youngster in Trey Lance starting under center. The 49ers are active on the trade market looking for a guard and have worked out veteran John Miller. Expect multiple moves on this front ahead of Tuesday.
  • DL: San Francisco could very well opt to go with 12 defensive linemen. That’s just how deep this unit is. We’re not buying that with a couple players seen as obvious trade candidates and others who could be stashed on the practice squad. For now, we’re going with nine defensive linemen.
  • LB: Typically, the 49ers go with five linebackers. We don’t see that changing here. All-Pro Fred Warner is joined by Dre Greenlaw and an underrated Azeez Al-Shaiir as starters. There’s not much competition behind them with Oren Burks and Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles as top reserves.

There’s going to be some surprises when it comes to the San Francisco 49ers’ roster and their ability to cut down to 53 players. That could come in th form of trades.

For now, this is how we expect things to play out as we give you our final 49ers 53-man roster prediction for the 2022 season.