The 49ers finalized their first wave of preseason roster cuts, trimming the group from 90 players down to 85, including a player who had a sack versus the Chiefs.
It’s never a fun time to be a fringe player on any NFL roster.
And this year, as it was years ago, clubs are forced to trim their rosters from the usual 90 players during the offseason and into training camp down in stages.
That first stage needed to be complete by 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Aug. 17, which accounted for teams like the San Francisco 49ers to at least get some game tape and conclusive material stemming from Week 1 of the preseason.
The Niners’ 19-16 exhibition loss to the Kansas City Chiefs presented a number of back-end players who showed some promise, including veteran defensive tackle Eddie Vanderdoes, who picked up two tackles, a quarterback hit and a sack over the course of the game.
Too bad for the 26-year-old Vanderdoes, whom San Francisco signed a few days ago on Aug. 12. He’s now part of that first wave of cuts.
The 49ers didn’t play their top two outside pass-rushers, Nick Bosa and Dee Ford, during the game. Also absent from action was second-year pro defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw. So getting a player like Vanderdoes to take some of those second-half snaps made sense.
Even if he stood little chance of making the 53-man roster anyway.
Additionally, per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, San Francisco claimed former Baltimore Ravens cornerback Davontae Harris off waivers. Around the same time, NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported the 49ers were waiving third-string quarterback Josh Rosen.
49ers officially sign Mychal Kendricks, trim 7 players off roster
The Niners officially announced a one-year deal for veteran linebacker Mychal Kendricks, whose reported signing broke in the middle of their exhibition opener on Saturday night.
Kendricks, soon to be 31 years old, is expected to beef up the depth behind fellow linebackers Fred Warner and Dre Greenlaw, the move made all the more necessary in the wake of third-year pro Azeez Al-Shaair suffering a knee injury during training camp.
As of the Tuesday deadline, San Francisco parted ways with the following players:
- DE Eddie Vanderdoes
- CB Ken Webster
- LB James Burgess Jr.
- LB Donald Payne
- TE Joshua Perkins
- WR Austin Watkins
- QB Josh Rosen
The exact corresponding move for Kendricks hasn’t been announced, as the seven released/waived likely would have been cut anyway, although it’s highly possible the 49ers place Watkins (foot) on an injury list after being waived/injured, provided no other team claims him, as he’ll miss six to eight weeks with the injury.
Now at the 85-player threshold, the Niners will have until Tuesday, Aug. 24 at 4 p.m. ET to enact the next phase of cut-downs, this time to 80 players.
All NFL teams have to have their rosters down to 53 active players by Aug. 31 at 4 p.m. ET.