NFL free agency is officially underway, and of course it is as crazy as we remember it. The 49ers are letting several of their free agents walk, which will shake up the depth chart heading into OTAs later this spring. The 49ers will be filling up the roster in the coming days, as well as next month, but in the meantime, I thought it would be helpful to take a look at what might work as a projected 49ers depth chart.
This reflects the pending trades, and also does not include any of the 49ers unrestricted free agents. It does include restricted free agent Tramaine Brock as he was tendered by the team. I have separated this into the projected roster with locks, strong bubble, regular bubble and longshots.
Some of the strong bubble guys I am fairly certain will be on the team, but there are enough potential issues that I keep them off. For example, Mario Manningham, if healthy, would be a lock. That knee injury could keep him out late into training camp, if not into the season. If the 49ers remain concerned about it, he could be a cap casualty. Parys Haralson has a good chance of sticking, but he could be a cap casualty, particularly if the team ends up signing John Abraham. Cam Johnson and Darius Fleming both have an excellent shot at the roster, but as late-round picks last year, they are not guaranteed anything. I listed Jewel Hampton as strong bubble in part because the team kept him all last year and got him on the 53-man roster by the end. They obviously like him.
If you just go with the locks, that's 38 players. If you add in the strong bubble, that gets us to 44. That leaves nine roster spots, and of course possibly more since the 49ers are not necessarily going to keep all five of the bubble guys. If the 49ers are able to sign Charles Woodson or Glenn Dorsey, we'll update accordingly.
QB: Colin Kaepernick, Scott Tolzien
RB: Frank Gore, Kendall Hunter, LaMichael James
FB: Bruce Miller, Anthony Dixon
WR: Michael Crabtree, A.J. Jenkins
WR: Anquan Boldin, Kyle Williams
TE: Vernon Davis, Garrett Celek
LT: Joe Staley
LG: Mike Iupati, Joe Looney
C: Jonathan Goodwin, Daniel Kilgore
RG: Alex Boone
RT: Anthony Davis
LDE: Ray McDonald, Demarcus Dobbs
NT: Ian Williams, Will Tukuafu
RDE: Justin Smith
ILB: NaVorro Bowman
ILB: Patrick Willis
OLB: Ahmad Brooks
OLB: Aldon Smith
CB: Tarell Brown, Perrish Cox
CB: Carlos Rogers, Chris Culliver
FS: Trenton Robinson
SS: Donte Whitner, C.J. Spillman
WR: Mario Mannigham
RB: Jewel Hampton
OLB: Parys Haralson, Cam Johnson, Darius Fleming
CB: Tramaine Brock