Harbaugh explains shutting Carradine down; pleased with Davis
With Tony Jerod-Eddie and Demarcus Dobbs playing well, there 49ers feel no pressure to rush Tank Carradine into the action. (AP)
Programming note: Watch Wednesday’s 49ers press conference with head coach Jim Harbaugh streaming live right here at 11:55 a.m.
The 49ers were a part of six roster moves on Tuesday that figure to have no bearing on this season’s team.
None of the players who either left or became ineligible to play this season were ever going to step on the field this season. And the newly arrived players do not figure to have an impact, either.
Still, the moves were noteworthy enough to take a closer look:
DL Tank Carradine
Placed on injured reserve
This move was surprising only in that Carradine (shown, below left) was on the 53-man roster and practiced fully since being removed off the non-football injury list. He had not been listed on any 49ers injury reports. And he has not played in any of the five games he was on the 49ers' roster.
But, last week, defensive coaches began to think that Carradine did not look right. The medical staff checked him out and decided it was best to take him off the practice field and concentrate on his rehab.
Carradine tore the ACL in his right knee on Nov. 23, 2012. One source said an accelerated rehab to get Carradine ready for pre-draft workouts meant that any team that drafted him would have to begin his rehab from beginning. Apparently, that’s what the 49ers did.
With Tony Jerod-Eddie and Demarcus Dobbs playing well as the backup defensive linemen, there 49ers feel no pressing need to rush Carradine into the action. Now, they can concentrate on getting him ready for the 2014 season.
G Ryan Seymour
Signed off Seahawks practice squad
There really does not appear to be a need for Seymour on the 53-man roster. Anyone the 49ers added at this point would not be suiting up for games as part of the game-day 46 active players, anyway. And even with Mike Iupati out for the past three games – he could return this week – the 49ers are well-covered at the guard positions.
Adam Snyder has filled in capably for Iupati. Joe Looney picked up the slack when he was called into action at the other guard spot against the St. Louis Rams. And Daniel Kilgore would be next in line at guard or center.
But the 49ers had an open roster spot with the decision to place Carradine on season-ending IR, and the team decided to grab one of Seattle’s draft picks. Seymour was a seventh-round selection. At the beginning of the season, the 49ers signed another Seattle draft pick, wide receiver/tight end Chris Harper, off their practice squad.
This move does create some problems for Seattle. Center Max Unger left Sunday’s game against the 49ers with a strained pectoral. The Seahawks carry nine offensive linemen on their 53-man roster, and Seymour was their only offensive lineman on the practice squad. Teams need 10 offensive linemen to practice so starters or players at other positions are not pressed into duty on the scout team.
S Michael Thomas
Signed with Dolphins off 49ers practice squad
When we checked in with Thomas three weeks ago, it was apparent that he could attract some attention around the league if teams were looking for a defensive back. When the Dolphins lost cornerback R.J. Stanford to a broken leg, they replaced him with a kid from Stanford.
The 49ers had bumped up Thomas’ pay on the practice squad from the league minimum of $6,000 a week to $8,823.52 weekly (or $150,000 for the season) as a reward for his good work with the scout team. It's possible Thomas could've made the 49ers' 53-man roster next season if Donte Whitner was not re-signed and the 49ers failed to add significantly to the position.
But, understandably, Thomas wanted an opportunity to appear in regular-season games – while also seeing his pay increase to nearly $24,000 a week.
Last season, coach Jim Harbaugh talked at the Super Bowl about four practice-squad players who turned down opportunities to sign with other teams during the course of the 2012 season. The move to stick with the 49ers paid off only for Jerod-Eddie, who has earned a role in the 49ers’ rotation. Linebacker Cam Johnson was traded to Indianapolis. Wide receiver Ricardo Lockette was waived, and now he’s playing for the Seattle Seahawks. And Al Netter was waived, and he’s back on the 49ers’ practice squad.
WR/RS Devon Wylie
Signed to practice squad
Wylie takes the spot on the practice squad that opened with Thomas’ departure to Miami. The Fresno State product has appeared in eight NFL games. Most recently, he played two games for the Tennessee Titans but was released on Nov. 26, two weeks after he lost a fumble on a kickoff return in a 30-27 loss to the Indianapolis Colts.
Wylie appeared in six games with Kansas City last season and caught six passes for 53 yards while also averaging 5.2 yards on five punt returns. During the exhibition season this summer, he had a 52-yard punt return against the 49ers.
The 49ers likely just want a security blanket on punt returns behind LaMichael James heading into the postseason. James is averaging 10.4 yards on 13 punt returns but has muffed punts two of the past three weeks.
RB Marcus Lattimore
Lattimore (shown, right), a fourth-round draft pick, took part in full practices with a brace on his reconstructed right knee. The 49ers never planned to play him this season. But Lattimore and Harbaugh both believe he gained a lot from being able to participate in three weeks of practices. Once the practice window closed, Lattimore automatically reverted to the reserve list, which makes him ineligible to practice or play for the remainder of the season.
OL Luke Marquardt
The 49ers saw enough talent before the draft – before a scheduled follow-up foot surgery – that they figured it was wise invest a little money and time in Marquardt’s stock. Marquardt (6 foot 8, 315 pounds) was an undrafted rookie from Azusa Pacific. He was not able to practice during the 21-day practice window, but he figures to be available for the offseason program.
In line images of Tank Carradine and Marcus Lattimore provided by The Associated Press