Breaking down the 53-man roster

49ers make tough calls on Hawkins, Jennings

Breaking down the 53-man roster
August 31, 2013, 4:45 pm
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Nate Stupar was one of the bigger surprises to make the 53-man roster, but his spot is still tenuous. (AP IMAGES)

OFFENSE
Quarterback (3):Colin Kaepernick, Colt McCoy, B.J. Daniels
If the 49ers had waived Daniels with the purpose of placing him on the practice squad, there would've been a half-dozen teams waiting to claim him.

Running back (5):Frank Gore, Bruce Miller, Kendall Hunter, LaMichael James, Anthony Dixon
So what happens if/when the 49ers sign fullback Owen Marecic? Dixon's role as a backup and special-teamer might be in jeopardy. Jewel Hampton could be ticketed for the practice squad.

[RELATED: 49ers announce cuts to 53-player limit]

Wide receiver (5):Anquan Boldin, Kyle Williams, Marlon Moore, Quinton Patton, Jon Baldwin
These five were not in doubt ever since the A.J. Jenkins trade brought Baldwin to town. There wasn't much Lavelle Hawkins, Austin Collie or Chad Hall could've done to crack into this group.

Tight end (3):Vernon Davis, Vance McDonald, Garrett Celek
Rookie MarQueis Gray has a lot of talent, and might be worth considering for the practice squad.

Offensive line (8):Joe Staley, Mike Iupati Jonathan Goodwin, Alex Boone, Anthony Davis, Adam Snyder, Daniel Kilgore, Joe Looney
The 49ers feel good about these eight players. Expect the 49ers to add two linemen to the practice squad.

DEFENSE
Defensive line (6):Ray McDonald, Ian Williams, Justin Smith, Glenn Dorsey, Will Tukuafu, Tony Jerod-Eddie
When Demarcus Dobbs is eligible to be reinstated after his one-week suspension, the 49ers will have another decision to make.

[RELATED: Brian Jennings: 'I've been honorably discharged]

Outside linebacker (5):Ahmad Brooks, Aldon Smith, Dan Skuta, Corey Lemonier, Cam Johnson
The trade of Parys Haralson to the New Orleans Saints made the decision to keep Cam Johnson easy.

Inside linebacker (5):Patrick Willis, NaVorro Bowman, Michael Wilhoite, Nick Moody, Nate Stupar
Stupar was the biggest surprise, but his spot is still tenuous as more roster shuffling looms.

Cornerback (5):Carlos Rogers, Tarell Brown, Nnamdi Asomugha, Tramaine Brock, Perrish Cox
Rookies Marcus Cooper and Darryl Morris proved to be worthy of practice-squad consideration

Safety (5):Donte Whitner, Eric Reid, Craig Dahl, C.J. Spillman, Bubba Ventrone
No surprises here, as Ventrone gets the nod because of his importance as personal protector on punts.

[RELATED: Harbaugh: 'There were a lot of worthy players']

SPECIAL TEAMS (3)
Punter:Andy Lee
Kicker:Phil Dawson
Long snapper:Kevin McDermott
The 49ers were looking to get younger and cheaper. The move to cut Brian Jennings saves the 49ers $535,000 in cap space. The 49ers believed a long-snapper such as McDermott does not come around every year, so they made the switch now.

Reserve/physically unable to perform
WR Michael Crabtree
WR Mario Manningham

Reserve/non-football injury/illness
CB Eric Wright
DL Tank Carradine
DL Quinton Dial
RB Marcus Lattimore
OL Luke Marquardt

The players on the above reserve lists are ineligible to practice or play for the first six weeks of the regular season.

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