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Jarryd Hayne seems destined to remain on the 49ers practice squad this season

One of the many questions of the San Francisco 49ers coaching staff has been why we are not seeing Jarryd Hayne on the field. Other teams have not signed Hayne, and he was not claimed off waivers, so interest is obviously limited to some extent. Nonetheless, in a season that seems otherwise lost, plenty of people want to see more of what Hayne can do in regular game action.

Jim Tomsula had a chance to address Hayne's status on Wednesday. Tomsula said Kendall Gaskins is currently in the concussion protocol, and that spurred a question about whether Hayne could potentially get the call if Gaskins does not clear the protocol by Sunday. Tomsula said he would not talk about "roster things", and made sure to point out that Gaskins looked good today.

Tomsula said that Hayne has been hard at work in practice, but did not add much more to it. Special teams coach Thomas McGaughey was asked about Hayne in his follow-up media session, and he said Hayne needs to learn the game from the inside out given his lack of history playing football. As a member of the practice squad, Hayne helps with the scout team, which the starting offense and defense face each week in preparation for games. On the scout team, Hayne plays a variety of positions, serving as "opposing player X" each week. For a guy with no prior American football experience, there is value to that.

Bruce Ellington has had his struggles as the 49ers return man, but is coming off a season-long 36-yard return against the Browns. If he has any serious fumble issues the rest of the way, things might change, but more than likely he will be the returner the rest of the season.

Matt Maiocco brought up one interesting point in an article on Hayne. When the season ends, practice squad players are automatically free agents. The 49ers will sign some of their practice squad players to reserve/future contracts, which essentially signs them through training camp. If a player on the practice squad is promoted to the 53-man roster before the end of the season, that player is then under contract through the end of their contract. I don't think the 49ers need to do this considering Hayne has not signed anywhere, and was not claimed off waivers earlier in the year, but it is certainly one possibility to consider as the season comes to a close.