The San Francisco 49ers officially announced their eight-man practice squad a few minutes ago. The unit will consist of:
DT Tony Jerod-Eddie
LB Cam Johnson
DT Matthew Masifilo
OT Al Netter
WR Nathan Palmer
S Michael Thomas
OT Kenny Wiggins
LB Michael Wilhoite
The two offensive tackles are not a surprise. The team kept two full-time offensive tackles on their 53-man roster, with Alex Boone likely operating as the primary backup. If there is an in-game Boone can fill in with Leonard Davis moving in at right guard, but if there is an injury requiring missed starts, the team will need to add a tackle to the roster.
Cam Johnson is not a surprise. He spent much of the preseason working back from some kind of knee surgery. He made his preseason debut on Thursday night but it seemed like the team figured they could hide him enough behind the injury to get him on the practice squad. Johnson is a guy who is reported to have a lot of talent, but has dealt with consistency and injury issues. Hopefully a year on the practice squad gets him ready for next year.
The practice squad will likely change over the course of the year. Opposing teams can sign a player off another practice squad at any time, but such a signing requires a commitment of having the player on the 53-man roster for three weeks. Additionally, as the 49ers needs change, they might release some players and sign others.