The 49ers face tough roster decisions in 2020, and these players could find themselves victims of unpredicted cuts.
Earlier this offseason, it didn’t seem like the San Francisco 49ers would make an under-the-radar move by parting ways with veteran right guard Mike Person. After all, Person had started all but two regular-season games in his two years with the Niners. And aside from being overworked by Kansas City Chiefs defensive tackle Chris Jones in Super Bowl LIV, Person was both reliable and serviceable if not overly exemplary.
But San Francisco did cut Person just before the 2020 league new year began, freeing up over $2 million in cap space against zero in dead money.
That was the thing: Person had zero in guarantees entering this season. And while contractual values are always interesting to monitor, things can and will get weird and tenuous when there are no guarantees left on a player’s deal.
There are other reasons players can be cut, too. Cheaper, more-promising options climb their way up the depth chart. A player might not perform well enough in training camp or the preseason. Getting into head coach Kyle Shanahan’s proverbial “doghouse” isn’t a good place to be, either. Few in that category have worked their way back into Shanahan’s good graces.
Heading into 2020 training camp, there are some players already squarely on the roster bubble. Each year, though, there wind up being some cuts that raise eyebrows.
Let’s focus on those kinds of players here.
In this slideshow, Niner Noise breaks down three players who could be shocking cuts between now and Week 1, specifically the reasons why their tenures in San Francisco could feasibly come to a close prematurely.