49ers roster: 5 players who’ll be cut by 2021 season’s end

Dontae Johnson #27 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Dontae Johnson #27 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /
1 of 5
Travis Benjamin, San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Travis Benjamin (17) Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports /

The 49ers already made a roster move by parting ways with underperforming cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick, but there are other cut moves highly likely.

Veteran cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick might have been a modest stopgap option for the San Francisco 49ers to reinforce what’s turned into a depleted secondary this season. But after flaming out and not offering up much aside from being overworked by some of the Niners’ opponents on multiple plays this season, San Francisco ultimately saw enough.

Kirkpatrick, waived and eventually let go after just 95 defensive snaps in a 49ers uniform, is just one of a number of different back-end-of-the-roster moves general manager John Lynch and Co. are likely to make between now and Week 18.

Some players will be let go because of others returning off injury lists, while others simply aren’t filling the levels of expectation placed upon them when brought aboard.

Here are five Niners who won’t be on the roster by the time the season has come to a close.

No. 5: 49ers Wide Receiver Travis Benjamin

San Francisco has received top-end production at wide receiver from Deebo Samuel this season, who currently ranks as the NFL’s No. 2 leading pass-catcher with 979 receiving yards through 10 weeks. Meanwhile, No. 2 wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk has started to catch on after a sluggish start to 2021.

After that, though, the 49ers’ wide receiver depth has been questionable at best, and the thought the speedy veteran wideout, Travis Benjamin, could make an impact after opting out in 2020 hasn’t come to fruition.

Benjamin, soon to turn 32 years old, has seen a scant 18 offensive snaps and hasn’t played on special teams during the regular season. Active just two games this season, there won’t be much of a reason to keep him on the 53-man roster for the rest of the year.

Especially when the Niners get back their primary slot receiver, Mohamed Sanu, back from injured reserve later this season.

Benjamin might find himself waived and subsequently demoted to the practice squad, but that’s likely his future fate once Sanu returns and if no one else suffers an injury.