SF 49ers: Jaquiski Tartt out for season, perhaps done with Niners

San Francisco 49ers strong safety Jaquiski Tartt (29) Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
San Francisco 49ers strong safety Jaquiski Tartt (29) Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports /

The SF 49ers injury report grew even more with Jaquiski Tartt out for the rest of 2020, and he’s likely not returning to the Niners in 2021.

SF 49ers strong safety Jaquiski Tartt probably played his last snap in a Niners uniform.

Head coach Kyle Shanahan, appearing on KNBR 680 Thursday afternoon, noted Tartt would be placed on injured reserve with a season-ending turf-toe injury suffered during the Niners’ Week 9 home loss to the Green Bay Packers a week before.

A pending free agent in 2021, it seems highly unlikely San Francisco will retain the 29-year-old Tartt, who was the team’s second-round selection in the 2015 NFL Draft and has spent his entire career thus far with the 49ers.

San Francisco is projected to have $23,260,308 in available cap space in 2021, per Over the Cap, and will have a swarm of other pending free agents it’ll want to re-sign, namely left tackle Trent Williams, fullback Kyle Juszczyk and cornerback K’Waun Williams. While Tartt’s injury history and a potential hometown discount could make a re-sign possible, it seems more likely the SF 49ers will elect to let Tartt walk after this season.

Tartt missed 19 regular-season games with varying injuries between 2017 and 2019, and he also missed two games this year before Shanahan broke the season-ending news.

That history, too, is another reason why the Niners are unlikely to bring the safety back. Should that be the case, Tartt will leave San Francisco with 301 combined tackles, 16 for a loss, four interceptions, 17 passes defended, two forced fumbles and four sacks over his six-year 49ers career.

Jaquiski Tartt injury opens up door for SF 49ers’ other safeties

With 2021 now becoming a bigger focus for the banged-up Niners, Tartt’s injury does have a bonus.

Reserve safeties — Tarvarius Moore, Marcell Harris and Johnathan Cyprien — all now have an increased shot to showcase their value and merit to San Francisco’s defense in future years.

Moore, in particular, could be a primary benefactor, as he’s still under a cheap rookie contract through 2021 yet has some notability after being a third-round draft selection from 2018. Harris, meanwhile, has been Tartt’s primary backup since the latter half of 2018 and could also see extensive field time.

Cyprien, a 2013 second-round draft pick who landed with the SF 49ers practice squad after training camp, is a free agent next season.

One can easily figure any playing time for him over the rest of the year would go a long way in determining his open-market value in 2021, potentially returning to the Niners on the cheap and at a much more team-friendly deal than what it likely could have cost the team to retain Tartt.

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For Tartt, he did manage to have a successful career in San Francisco, albeit plagued by injury. It’s only unfortunate, should it end, it would have to come to that by the way of yet another setback of this kind.