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49ers set roster ahead of opener, leave spot for Warner

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The 49ers trimmed their roster on Saturday to the 53-player roster limit and beyond.

After a busy day of roster moves, the 49ers currently have 52 players on their roster.

The extra move takes into account linebacker Fred Warner, who does not count against the roster limit while on the NFL’s reserve/COVID-19 list. Warner was placed on the list on Monday, and the club hopes he will be available next week to face the Arizona Cardinals in the season opener at Levi's Stadium.

There were not many unexpected moves when the 49ers announced their initial roster. Perhaps, the only minor surprise was linebacker Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles earning a spot on the initial roster.

Flannigan-Fowles spent most of last season on the 49ers’ practice squad after signing with the club last year as an undrafted rookie from Arizona. He went on injured reserve in December due to a foot injury sustained during a practice in Florida, as the 49ers were preparing to face the New Orleans Saints.

Flannigan-Fowles won a roster spot over Joe Walker, a three-year veteran who started 11 games last season with the Arizona Cardinals.

In one of the other intriguing competitions, Marcell Harris won a job as a backup safety over veteran Johnathan Cyprien.

This season due to the COVID-19 pandemic, teams are allowed to retain 16 players on their practice squads – a list that include six veteran players. Cyprien said recently he has no interest in being on the practice squad.


Coach Kyle Shanahan said he would try to convince any skeptical veterans that it’s in the player’s best interest to accept a spot on the practice squad.

Here is a look at the 49ers’ initial roster (players in parenthesis do not count against the roster limit):

Quarterback (3)

Jimmy Garoppolo, Nick Mullens, C.J. Beathard

Running back (5)

Raheem Mostert, Kyle Juszczyk, Tevin Coleman, Jerick McKinnon, Jeff Wilson

Wide receiver (6)

Deebo Samuel, Kendrick Bourne, Brandon Aiyuk, Trent Taylor, Dante Pettis, Richie James

Tight end (4)

George Kittle, Jordan Reed, Charlie Woerner, Ross Dwelley

Offensive line (8)

Trent Williams, Mike McGlinchey, Laken Tomlinson, Daniel Brunskill, Tom Compton, Ben Garland, Colton McKivitz, Justin Skule

Defensive line (9)

Arik Armstead, Nick Bosa, Dee Ford, D.J. Jones, Javon Kinlaw, Solomon Thomas, Kentavius Street, Kerry Hyder, Kevin Givens

(Ronald Blair/physically unable to perform), (Jullian Taylor/physically unable to perform)


Linebacker (5)

Kwon Alexander, Dre Greenlaw, Azeez Al-Shaair, Mark Nzeocha, Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles

(Fred Warner/COVID-19)

Defensive back (9)

Richard Sherman, Emmanuel Moseley, Jimmie Ward, Jaquiski Tartt, K’Waun Williams, Tarvarius Moore, Ahkello Witherspoon, Marcell Harris, Jason Verrett

Specialists (3)

K-Robbie Gould, P-Mitch Wishnowsky, LS-Kyle Nelson