NFL Roster Cuts Deadline 2013 FAQ

Jason O. Watson

When do the 49ers have to cut down to 53 players? We break down the mechanics of cut-down day.

The San Francisco 49ers currently have 75 players on their roster, and have to cut down to 53 players for the 2013 season. We've been discussing roster cuts over and over again, but it seemed like it would be helpful to have a simple breakdown of cut-down day. Here is cut down day for the NFL in a nutshell.

When is the deadline?

All 32 teams have until 3:00 p.m. PT on Saturday to be at the 53-man roster limit.

When can cuts happen?

They can happen at any point between now and then, much like we saw when the 49ers made some cuts Monday, before cutting down to 75 completely on Tuesday. The 49ers reportedly did not get back to Santa Clara until around 4 this morning, which means we might not get many cuts first thing this morning. Apparently, the San Diego and San Jose airports have curfews, so the 49ers had to bus up to Ontario, up near LA, fly to San Francisco International Airport, and then drive down to Santa Clara. They're going to be a little tired.

What are they cutting down to?

They are cutting down from 75 players to 53 players.

Will that be the roster we see next week against Green Bay?

Not necessarily. When players are released, other teams have interest in some of the players. A cut player with less than four years of service time is placed on waivers. All 31 other teams can place a claim on the player and add him to their 53-man roster. An example of that would be when the 49ers claimed now former QB Scott Tolzien from the Chargers back in 2011.

How does Demarcus Dobbs' Week 1 suspension affect these cuts?

The 49ers have two choices. They can go one man short against Green Bay, or they can get a roster exemption. Odds seem pretty good they would simply go with the roster exemption to have that extra body on defense against the prolific Packers offense. That means, if the team was planning on keeping Dobbs this season, there will be a player on the Week 1 roster that will not be on the Week 2 roster.

What about the practice squad?

We'll go into much more detail, but the 49ers can sign up to 8 players to a practice squad that is independent of the 53-man roster. We'll break down the limitations but the practice squad consists of younger players the team has an interest in developing. Jim Harbaugh likes to call it the "opportunity" squad. In order to get to the practice squad, a player must clear waivers. After he clears waivers, he becomes a free agent, and then can sign with the practice squad (or anybody's practice squad, for that matter).

Who could get cut?

Well, I posted my final 53-man roster projection, so that's a starting point. Here is a listing of the 49ers entire roster, with roster cuts and injury list placements reflected by strike-throughs.

Players currently on roster: 75
QB Colin Kaepernick
QB Colt McCoy
QB B.J. Daniels
QB Seneca Wallace
QB Scott Tolzien

RB Frank Gore
RB Kendall Hunter
RB LaMichael James
RB Jewel Hampton
RB Marcus Lattimore
RB D.J. Harper


FB Bruce Miller
FB Anthony Dixon
FB Jason Schepler

WR Anquan Boldin
WR Marlon Moore
WR Quinton Patton
WR Kyle Williams
WR Jon Baldwin
WR Austin Collie
WR Lavelle Hawkins
WR Chad Hall
WR Kassim Osgood
WR Chuck Jacobs
WR Michael Crabtree
WR Mario Manningham
TE Vernon Davis
TE Vance McDonald
TE Garrett Celek
TE MarQueis Gray

OT Joe Staley
OT Anthony Davis
OT Carter Bykowski
OT Kenny Wiggins
OT Patrick Omameh
OT Luke Marquardt

OG Alex Boone
OG Mike Iupati
OG Adam Snyder
OG Joe Looney
OG Wayne Tribue
OG Al Netter

C Jonathan Goodwin
C Daniel Kilgore
DL Justin Smith
DL Ray McDonald
DL Ian Williams
DL Glenn Dorsey
DL Will Tukuafu
DL Cornellius Carradine
DL Quinton Dial
DL Demarcus Dobbs
DL Tony Jerod-Eddie
DL Lawrence Okoye
DL Lamar Divens
DL Mike Purcell

LB Patrick Willis
LB NaVorro Bowman
LB Michael Wilhoite
LB Nick Moody
LB Nate Stupar
LB Travis Johnson
LB Aldon Smith
LB Ahmad Brooks
LB Parys Haralson
LB Corey Lemonier
LB Dan Skuta
LB Cam Johnson
LB Joe Holland
CB Carlos Rogers
CB Tarell Brown
CB Chris Culliver
CB Tramaine Brock
CB Nnamdi Asomugha
CB Perrish Cox
CB Marcus Cooper
CB Darryl Morris
CB Eric Wright

S Donte Whitner
S Craig Dahl
S Eric Reid
S C.J. Spillman
S Trenton Robinson
S Raymond Ventrone
S Michael Thomas

K Phil Dawson

P Andy Lee
P Colton Schmidt

LS Brian Jennings
LS Kevin McDermott

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