Option 2: 49ers can bring back an old friend
Spotrac lists 84 safeties who aren't currently on active rosters, and while a bunch of them are older veterans such as Devin McCourty (35) or Duron Harmon (32) who aren't likely to be added to the 49ers' mix at this point in the season, there are some intriguing names there.
Chief among them is an old friend, Tarvarius Moore, whom the Niners drafted in the third round of the 2018 NFL Draft out of Southern Mississippi and looked to be a key part of the team's future defensive backfield.
But the Niners allowed Moore to walk after he played just 41 defensive snaps in 2022, and he signed a one-year deal with the Green Bay Packers last offseason.
It looked like Moore was in line to possibly be a starter for the Packers in 2023, but he suffered a minor knee injury in Green Bay's second preseason game and missed the rest of training camp.
Green Bay released him with an injury settlement on Sept. 6.
Moore could be an add here for two reasons. First, he was primarily a special teams player during his tenure in San Francisco, playing 71 percent of special teams snaps during his first two seasons before dropping to 51 percent in year three as playing time on defense increased, and then popping back up to 66 percent in 13 games in his final year.
This would mean he could be in a good position to step right into the role the 49ers need him to play with Ji'Ayir Brown's promotion to the starting lineup.
But Moore hasn't been away from the Niners for long, so he could also step in as a safety on defense in case of an emergency, making him an ideal emergency fit.
Another option in this arena would be veteran Jaquiski Tartt, whom the 49ers allowed to walk in free agency after the 2021 season. He was signed by the Philadelphia Eagles but was waived before the start of the 2022 regular season and hasn't played football since.
It's worth noting that Tartt wasn't contacted when the 49ers encountered safety depth issues early last season after the Eagles cut him loose, and there may be some hurt feelings involved, but it may be a tire worth kicking.
And, of course, there's always Dontae Johnson, whom San Francisco recently brought in for another workout and has played safety in the past.