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49ers reach terms with 15 players for initial practice squad

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The 49ers made two roster adjustments on Wednesday, one day after the NFL's initial cut to 53 active players per team, but they still have no obvious answer at punt returner among that group.

The 49ers signed center Jake Brendel and cornerback Dontae Johnson to the 53-man roster to fill the roster vacancies left when the team placed defensive tackle Maurice Hurst (ankle) and cornerback Davontae Harris (hamstring) on injured reserve.

Wide receiver/return man Travis Benjamin is among the 15 players known to the joining the 49ers' practice squad. The 49ers have the option of elevating Benjamin to the active roster for the team's opener on Sunday, Sept. 12, against the Detroit Lions.

The 49ers might have wanted to bring back Nsimba Webster as the punt returner, but the Chicago Bears claimed him off waivers.

The only other legitimate option to return punts is starting wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk.


General manager John Lynch confirmed the 49ers reached agreements with tight end Tanner Hudson, claimed off waivers from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and cornerback Dee Virgin, formerly of the Detroit Lions, to join the 49ers' practice squad.

The 49ers announced 13 other players have signed to the practice. Veteran safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, whom the 49ers cut on Tuesday, is not among the players signed to the practice squad. Lynch said the team is in conversations with Clinton-Dix and hopes to sign him to the practice squad.

Nate Sudfeld was signed to the practice squad to become the 49ers' third quarterback behind Jimmy Garoppolo and Trey Lance.

RELATED: Three 49ers claimed off waivers, including one by Seahawks

Here are the 13 players the 49ers re-signed to the practice squad:

Defensive lineman Alex Barrett

Wide receiver Travis Benjamin

Wide receiver River Cracraft

Defensive lineman Darrion Daniels

Offensive lineman Alfredo Gutierrez

Fullback Josh Hokit

Offensive lineman Corbin Kaufusi

Offensive lineman Senio Kelemete

Tight end Jordan Matthews

Safety Jared Mayden

Offensive lineman Colton McKivitz


Quarterback Nate Sudfeld

Linebacker Elijah Sullivan

Gutierrez is part of the NFL’s International Pathway Program and is considered an exemption on practice squad, allowing the 49ers to retain 17 players.

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