The San Francisco 49ers have closed out their eight man practice squad. The team confirmed they have signed tight end Derek Carrier. The former Division III product out of Beloit College originally signed last year with the Oakland Raiders as an undrafted free agent. He spent last season on the Eagles practice squad, and Eric Branch has a rundown of some of his numbers from college.
The 49ers lost tight end MarQueis Gray to waivers, with six teams placing a claim on the converted quarterback/wide receiver. The 49ers got through cuts with Vernon Davis, Vance McDonald and Garrett Celek. However, yesterday, the team signed Seahawks practice squad wide receiver Chris Harper. Some discussion since then has hinted at a potential Delanie Walker-type H-back role for Harper.
Heading into last year's draft, Bill Williamson (the new 49ers writer for ESPN) had some thoughts on Carrier:
If Carrier went an SEC school, he'd likely be an early-round pick; as things stand, he is expected to go in the sixth or seventh round. There is no doubt that he is a project, but there is a lot to like.
He is 6-foot-3, 240 pounds and ran a 4.49 40-yard dash. He has a 40-inch vertical jump and did a three-cone run in 6.69 seconds, which is off the charts.
Most important, Carrier has shown he can produce. He had 75 catches and l12 touchdowns last season. The only knock on this specimen is the level of competition he has faced.
For a more unique breakdown, head over to Bleeding Green Nation's case for Derek Carrier as a potential answer to tight end issues. It didn't work out in Philadelphia, but it's an interesting read, nonetheless.