Approximately 39 hours after the 49ers' exhibition finale Thursday night against the Los Angeles Chargers at Levi's Stadium, the club must trim its roster from 87 players to the regular-season limit of 53.
The deadline to get to the roster limit is Saturday at 1 p.m. (PT). The following day, all teams are allowed to begin signing players to their 10-man practice squads.
Here's the final 49ers roster projection, along with candidates for trades and injured reserve:
Note: Hoyer is the No. 1, obviously. And Beathard appears to be secure in the No. 2 spot. Hoyer has experienced injury issues during his career, so beginning the season with two QBs is a bit of a risk. But if the 49ers need to add another signal-caller later in the season, it’s a safe bet Matt Barkley will be available. Undrafted rookie Nick Mullens could be back on the practice squad.
RUNNING BACK/FULLBACK (5)
FB Kyle Juszczyk
Note: Veteran Tim Hightower was the No. 2 back for most of camp. But the emergence of Breida and Mostert prompt the 49ers to go with the young players ahead of veterans Hightower and Kapri Bibbs. Mostert also figures to be a huge presence on special teams.
WIDE RECEIVER (6)
Note: Jeremy Kerley becomes a trade candidate with Taylor and Bolden showing plenty with which to get excited. Taylor has looked very good from the opening day of the offseason program as a slot receiver. Bolden has return skills. Those two have made Kerley expendable. Burbridge gets a spot based on his play on special teams. Kendrick Bourne should be back on the practice squad.
TIGHT END (3)
Note: The trade of Vance McDonald opens the way for Celek to stick on the roster, along with Kittle and Paulsen. The 49ers are likely to ticket Cole Hikutini for the practice squad, assuming he clears waivers.
OFFENSIVE LINE (8)
LT Joe Staley
LG Zane Beadles
C Daniel Kilgore
RG Brandon Fusco
RT Trent Brown
Note: The 49ers could swap out Garnett for a player they add after the cuts to 53 players. Garnett (knee) is a candidate for injured reserve or IR/designated for return. In order for be eligible to return, Garnett must be on the team’s original 53-man roster. Magnuson has played his way onto the roster. Veterans Tim Barnes and Garry Gilliam get bumped for younger players.
DEFENSIVE LINE (9)
LE Solomon Thomas
NT Earl Mitchell
DT DeForest Buckner
RE Arik Armstead
Note: Dial could be dangled in trade talks. If there is no trade, he’s just too good not to make onto the 53-man roster over Chris Jones and Sen’Derrick Marks. Ronald Blair has made a late push, but he simply gets caught up in the numbers game.
SLB Eli Harold
MLB NaVorro Bowman
WLB Reuben Foster
Note: Taumoepenu is definitely on the bubble. But the 49ers should make an investment in the future by keeping him on the 53-man roster. His skillset is perfect for a 3-4 defense, and one of those teams could claim him to prevent him from landing back with the 49ers on the practice squad.
Note: Will Redmond has been battling an ankle injury for a couple of weeks, and is a candidate for injured reserve. Keith Reaser did not have a strong exhibition season, so it’s a tough call whether to go with him or Jackson, who can also play nickel back.
Note: Jerome had a strong camp to earn his spot onto the team. The 49ers want to see more out of him on special teams. And that phase of the game just happens to be where Sunseri excels. Adrian Colbert returns to the practice squad.
K Robbie Gould
P Bradley Pinion
LS Kyle Nelson
Note: Nick Rose put himself on the radar for teams who might need a kicker later with the 55-yard field goal he nailed Sunday night against the Vikings.