In what can only be described as a huge vote of confidence for 49ers rookie cornerback Sam Womack, the club on Monday released a veteran player who had been lining up as the team's top nickel back.
The 49ers announced veteran cornerback Darqueze Dennard was among the team's cuts in order to get to the 85-player limit.
Womack, a fifth-round pick from Toledo who had two interceptions in the 49ers' preseason opener against the Green Bay Packers, appears to be the current top choice to replace K'Waun Williams at nickel back. Williams signed this offseason with the Denver Broncos.
“For Womack, those are plays you saw him make in college," 49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans said. "Like he was always sticky in coverage, contesting the throws, a lot of PBUs, a lot of interceptions in college.
"So I've seen him make those plays, seen him make those plays in the game as well, seen him make those plays in practice, so it wasn't a surprise that he was sticky in coverage."
The 49ers also waived the following players: fullback Josh Hokit, wide receiver KeeSean Johnson and defensive lineman Tomasi Laulile.
Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo remains on the 49ers' roster, even though he does not practice, attend meetings or have an updated playbook, as first reported last week.
Garoppolo has been medically cleared following shoulder surgery in March. He continues to go through daily throwing sessions at the team's facility in Santa Clara to build strength in his arm.
The 49ers are holding onto Garoppolo as they retain hope of being able to trade him before the start of the regular season.
All NFL teams are mandated to trim their rosters from 90 players to 85 before the deadline on Tuesday at 1 p.m. (PT).
The next round of cuts are scheduled to be completed by Aug. 23, at which point the maximum number of players on all rosters must be 80 players.
Finally, after the final preseason games around the league, teams must reduce their rosters to the regular-season limit of 53 players by Tuesday, Aug. 30, at 1 p.m.
The 49ers are scheduled to fly to Minnesota after practice Monday. The club will have joint practices against the Vikings on Wednesday and Thursday before the team meeting in the second preseason game for both teams.