San Francisco 49ers: 10 Starters Who Might Not Make the 53-Man Roster in 2016

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49ers Phil Dawson. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
49ers Phil Dawson. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 10: Kicker Phil Dawson

At 41 years old, kicker Phil Dawson has already defied the age gods of the football world.

Last year, Dawson made 24 of his 27 field-goal attempts and missed just one extra-point try — not bad, considering some early struggles at Levi’s Stadium, his age and the general problems the Niners endured last season.

So why would the 49ers ever bother considering parting ways with Dawson before the regular season begins, especially after signing him to a one-year extension during the offseason?

Again, this isn’t a “should happen” or “will happen” scenario. Let’s focus on the “could” and that only.

For starters, the 49ers aren’t in any sort of cap trouble. So the team doesn’t need to free up space. At least not this season. But the Niners did bring in rookie kicker John Lunsford out of Liberty shortly after the NFL Draft this year.

In all likelihood, Lunsford is a camp body like former 49ers backup kicker Corey Acosta was last year. But, if for whatever reason Lunsford absolutely shines, it’s perfectly reasonable to see why Dawson is shown his walking papers.

Remember, the 49ers replaced veteran punter Andy Lee with then-rookie Bradley Pinion last year. Granted, Pinion was actually drafted, which gave him a better chance to stay. But you can see the parallel here.

Next: CB Tramaine Brock