49ers roster 2023: Curtis Robinson, that other Niners linebacker

At one end of the 49ers' linebacker spectrum, there's All-Pro Fred Warner. At the other end, there's Curtis Robinson.
San Francisco 49ers linebacker Curtis Robinson (59)
San Francisco 49ers linebacker Curtis Robinson (59) / Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

The 49ers have a loaded linebacker room with many well-known names. But Curtis Robinson isn't one of them.

Curtis Robinson has the distinct honor of being part of the NFL's best linebacker corps, ranked No. 1 in the league by Pro Football Focus for two years in a row.

It's hard to say Robinson had much to do with that ranking, though.

True, the Niners are stacked at the position, led by Dre Greenlaw and All-Pro Fred Warner, and they also boast some quality under-the-radar names in Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles, Oren Burks, Marcelino McCrary-Ball and then two rookies, Dee Winters and Jalen Graham, looking to make their mark.

Robinson, 25 years old, isn't exactly a part of that discussion. Although he's managed to hang around San Francisco long enough to warrant some attention.





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An undrafted free agent out of Stanford, Robinson signed on with the Denver Broncos and spent the bulk of his rookie year on the practice squad. Denver subsequently released him from the practice squad in November of that year, and Robinson then joined the 49ers' practice squad a month later.

Signing a reserve/futures contract with the Niners during the offseason, Robinson figures to be at least a camp body and a potential reserve call-up, should he land back on the practice squad again once the regular season begins.

In what world does Curtis Robinson make 49ers' 53-man roster?

Putting things bluntly, Robinson has exceptionally long odds of making San Francisco's regular-season roster.

Essentially every name listed previously behind Warner and Greenlaw has a better claim to a roster spot than Robinson. Burks and Flannigan-Fowles were the 49ers' go-to options at the position when injuries required reinforcements, and second-year pro Marcelino McCrary-Ball is reportedly making notable strides this offseason, too.

Tack on the fact the Niners used 2023 NFL Draft assets on Winters and Graham, and it doesn't appear as if Robinson has much of a chance.

For starters, Robinson will need to beat out both rookies for even a remote possibility, and he'd also likely have to outshine at least one of the three remaining depth veterans behind Warner and Greenlaw. And that's if San Francisco keeps five linebackers and not just four.

A rash of injuries could pile up, too. And while that wouldn't be ideal for the 49ers, it could potentially benefit someone like Robinson.

That said, Robinson is likely one of those who'll see a decent amount of field time this preseason before being relegated back to the practice squad, potentially not even making it there if the Niners prefer to keep some of their other backers on that unit instead.

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