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49ers roster cuts: Who will not make it through the first round?

The San Francisco 49ers have to cut down to a 75-man roster limit on Tuesday, September 1. We break down some of the candidates.

The San Francisco 49ers head into this weekend for their third preseason game with roster cuts on the brain. The first round of roster cuts is fast approaching. Next Tuesday, September 1, the 49ers have until 1 p.m. PT to cut down their roster to no more than 75 players. They will follow that up on Saturday, September 5 when they have to cut down to the 53-man player. That Saturday is also when they must be in line with the salary cap for their entire roster of players.

The approaching deadline makes this weekend's contest against the Denver Broncos a huge deal for several players. I am sure Trent Baalke and company already have a good idea of the roster cuts. However, a strong performance in Week 3 could buy players one more game.

The 49ers currently have 89 players on the roster following the Derek Carrier trade. I have posted the full roster down below, and I thought we would start taking a look at potential roster moves to get to the 75 man limit.

First and foremost, the 49ers can clear two spots with their injury lists. The team can move players from Active/PUP and Active/NFI to the Reserve versions of those lists, and cut down from the 89-man limit. If they remain on the Active version of the list, they count against that roster limit, so I expect those to happen. That means, we can expect DeAndre Smelter to be moved over to Reserve/NFI, and Daniel Kilgore to be moved over to Reserve/PUP. I suppose the team could hold out hope Kilgore will be able to get back sooner, but I suspect he ends up on the PUP list to start the regular season.

That leaves the 49ers with 12 roster moves to make. Right now, some candidates to be cut would potentially include the following:

RB Kendall Gaskins
WR Mario Hull
WR Nigel King
WR Issac Blakeney
WR DiAndre Campbell
TE Xavier Grimble
OL Patrick Miller

DT Garrison Smith
ILB Steve Beauharnais
ILB Desmond Bishop (with injury settlement)
OLB Shawn Lemon
OLB Ahmad Brooks (maybe?)
CB Mylan Hicks
S Jermaine Whitehead

K Corey Acosta

Some of the candidates seem fairly obvious, while others are not quite as clear. I went through early preseason stats, snap counts and the depth chart to try and figure out some additional candidates. Snap count is hard to use for predictive purposes. After all, some of these low snap count guys might be hidden by the team for the practice squad. If that's the case, they would likely not be cut with this first round of roster cuts.

Ahmad Brooks is on there just as a maybe option. I am starting to think we might see the team wait a while before any decision is made. The NFL can put him on the Commissioner's Exempt list, but there is no word on the next step in that regard. Given his questionable status, Shawn Lemon is another guy who might stick around for the last game, simply because the team might need bodies.

Desmond Bishop had surgery on his hand, and his status is up in the air. I did not think he would make the final roster anyway, but if the team is planning on releasing him, I could see them release him and pay him an injury settlement. That is based on expected number of missed regular season weeks, multiplied by his weekly pay. It would count against the 49ers salary cap this year.

Players currently on roster: 89

QB Colin Kaepernick
QB Blaine Gabbert
QB Dylan Thompson

RB Carlos Hyde
RB Kendall Hunter
RB Reggie Bush
RB Kendall Gaskins
RB Jarryd Hayne
RB Mike Davis

FB Bruce Miller
FB Trey Millard

WR Anquan Boldin
WR Torrey Smith
WR Quinton Patton
WR Bruce Ellington
WR Chuck Jacobs
WR Jerome Simpson
WR DeAndre Smelter
WR Dres Anderson
WR Issac Blakeney
WR DiAndre Campbell
WR DeAndrew White
WR Mario Hull
WR Nigel King

TE Vernon Davis
TE Vance McDonald
TE Garrett Celek
TE Xavier Grimble
TE Blake Bell
TE Rory Anderson

OT Joe Staley
OT Erik Pears
OL Trenton Brown
OL Patrick Miller
OL Justin Renfrow
OL Sean Hooey

OG Alex Boone
OG Joe Looney
OG Brandon Thomas
OG Andrew Tiller
OL Ian Silberman
OG Jordan Devey

C Daniel Kilgore
C Marcus Martin
C Dillon Farrell

DL Darnell Dockett
DL Ian Williams
DL Glenn Dorsey
DL Tank Carradine
DL Quinton Dial
DL Tony Jerod-Eddie
DL Lawrence Okoye
DL Mike Purcell
DL Kaleb Ramsey
DL Garrison Smith
DL Arik Armstead

ILB NaVorro Bowman
ILB Michael Wilhoite
ILB Nick Moody
ILB Shayne Skov
ILB Desmond Bishop
ILB Nick Bellore
ILB Phillip Wheeler
ILB Steve Beauharnais

OLB Ahmad Brooks
OLB Corey Lemonier
OLB Aaron Lynch
OLB Eli Harold
OLB Marcus Rush
OLB Shawn Lemon

CB Tramaine Brock
CB Dontae Johnson
CB Shareece Wright
CB Keith Reaser
CB Kenneth Acker
CB Leon McFadden
CB Marcus Cromartie
CB Mylan Hicks

S Eric Reid
S Antoine Bethea
S Craig Dahl
S L.J. McCray
DB Jimmie Ward
S Jaquiski Tartt
S Jermaine Whitehead

K Phil Dawson
K Corey Acosta

P Bradley Pinion

LS Kyle Nelson