The San Francisco 49ers re-signed Blaine Gabbert to a two-year deal last month, giving them two quarterbacks on the roster. It remains to be seen if they will carry a third, but Josh Johnson's future remains up in the air. The free agent who spent most of 2014 with the 49ers remains on the market, and is visiting the Cincinnati Bengals, according to Jason LaCanfora.
Johnson was involved in numerous transactions last season, and might have been signed and released by the same team more than any in recent memory. He signed with the 49ers on May 14. He made the roster out of training camp. He was then released on September 20 when the 49ers promoted tight end Asante Cleveland from the practice squad. Johnson re-signed on September 24 when the team put Cleveland back on the practice squad. Johnson was later released on October 10 to make room for Kassim Osgood. He was signed back to the roster on October 14 when the team released Bubba Ventrone. A few days later on October 17, Johnson was released and Ventrone was re-signed. Finally, on October 21, Johnson was signed back to the roster for the remainder of the season.
The roster moves effectively allowed the 49ers to have a 54-man roster until they reached the point in the season where players had to clear waivers with each departure. It gave the team an extra quarterback as needed, and then got them the required special teams player on Sunday. Fun times all around!
Now that Jim Harbaugh is gone, it would not be surprising to see Johnson not return to the team. I suppose QB coach Steve Logan could decide he wants to work with him, but for now Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert are the team's quarterbacks. The 49ers seem comfortable with the development of Gabbert to date. The team has said they liked what they saw in practice. He got very limited reps in actual games, so I suppose we're left taking them at their word on this.
The question now is whether they invest a draft pick in another quarterback, or just signed some UDFAs. The team will likely add at least two more quarterbacks to get them through the offseason work and training camp. Current available free agents include Johnson, Tarvaris Jackson (Seahawks expect to re-sign him), Matt Flynn, Jason Campbell, Michael Vick and Tyler Thigpen. That is a who's who of bleh quarterbacks.