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2016 49ers 90-man roster ranking: players 20-11

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We continue the countdown of our 49ers’ roster ranking, today looking at players ranked 20-11. This group includes some of the big guys up front.

The San Francisco 49ers are a week and a half away from the start of training camp, which means the downtime is just about set to come to a close. While we prepare for that, I came across a fun idea over at our Packers blog, Acme Packing Company. They had five of their writers rank out the team’s entire 88-man roster (indeed, they still have two spots available), and come up with a composite ranking. You’ll be stunned to learn that Aaron Rodgers finished in first place.

I spoke with ten of our contributors, and we each put together our rankings of the 49ers entire 90-man roster. It was a blind ranking, with each person submitting their rankings to me. I then created a composite ranking, which will be revealed over the next nine days, ten players at a time. After that is complete, I will post the individual rankings, along with comments from each voter on any particularly notable high or low ranked players. The voters included myself, Pat Holloway, James Brady, Tracy (49ersfangirl), Billy from the Nuggets, Jason Hurley, Greg Valerio, Oscar and David from Better Rivals, Alex Rubenstein who does video work for SB Nation, and Jennifer Chan.

Since this is entirely subjective, I did not provide a specific framework for voting. I simply told them to factor in injuries and the Aaron Lynch suspension, and figure it out from there. This could shuffle around plenty between now and the team’s final roster cuts. Here are spots 11-20.

20. Blaine Gabbert, QB (High: 8, Low: 34)

The first of two quarterbacks on today’s list. The 49ers acquired Blaine Gabbert via trade, and he replaced Colin Kaepernick in the starting lineup midway through last season. He handled first team reps in OTAs and minicamp while Kaepernick was rehabbing his various injuries. Kaepernick appears to be cleared for training camp, so we’ll soon see how the reps are split.

19. Bruce Miller, TE (High: 7, Low: 50)

Chip Kelly’s offense does not use a fullback all that much, and so the 49ers fullback is moving to tight end. He made a transition from defensive end to fullback coming out of college, so a position change is nothing new. Opinions vary wildly on what to make of Miller with this change, and I think it is reflected with rankings a little all over the place.

18. Colin Kaepernick, QB (High: 7, Low: 44)

And, the other 49ers quarterback. Kaepernick was cleared by his surgeon earlier this week, and will now undergo a physical in Santa Clara before the quarterback competition begins. Once he is formally cleared there, we wait and see how snaps are split. Kaepernick spent all of OTAs working on rehab, but in minicamp he got some work in team drills (but no 11-on-11 work).

17. Joshua Garnett, OG (High: 13, Low: 28)

The 49ers traded up into the first round this year to select Garnett out of Stanford. He has yet to sign his rookie contract, but I would hope they get things settled fairly quickly at the start of camp. He missed OTAs because of Stanford’s final exam schedule, but got work with the third team during minicamp. He will slot in at right guard, and it is a matter of when not if he’ll move into the starting lineup.

16. Tramaine Brock, CB (High: 8, Low: 29)

The 49ers signed Brock as a UDFA back in 2010, and he has worked his way up to being the veteran leader of the cornerbacks. He ranked well in adjusted success rate for cornerbacks, but did not rank well in adjusted yards per target. He’s not the shutdown corner teams would like to have, but he does solid work at a decent price. He’ll be starting at one of the two positions, but it will be interesting to see if the team locks Brock and Ward into specific sides, or if one follows a given receiver.

15. Daniel Kilgore, C (High: 8, Low: 27)

The 49ers drafted Kilgore in the fifth round of the 2011 NFL Draft, and he slowly worked his way up to starting center. He suffered a lower leg injury midway through the 2014 season that put him on the PUP last season. He returned for the final five games of the season, starting the final three at center. He will be the starting center this year, hopefully anchoring the middle of a line that has dealt with turmoil the last two seasons.

14. Phil Dawson, K (High: 3, Low: 28)

The 49ers signed Dawson to a one-year contract this offseason, giving him a fully guaranteed deal for his fourth season with the team. They signed Liberty kicker John Lunsford as an undrafted free agent, but Dawson will remain in place as the 49ers kicker. He is coming off a strong season, although an ineffective offense meant his lowest number of field goal attempts in a 16-game schedule since 2001.

13. Jaquiski Tartt, S (High: 6, Low: 29)

The 49ers spent a second round pick on Tartt last season, and he got significant experience early. Antoine Bethea suffered a torn pectoral muscle, and Tartt took over as starting strong safety for eight games. Bethea is back this year, and Tartt is looking at more of a hybrid role. I imagine we see a lot of him in nickel and dime packages.

12. Ian Williams, DT (High: 4, Low: 39)

He has as much to prove as anybody on this roster. Williams was very strong in 2015, starting all 16 games for the first time in his five-year career. However, offseason ankle surgeries mean health remains a question mark. He is expected to open training camp on the PUP list, and his status for Week 1 is in question.

11. Quinton Dial, DT (High: 9, Low: 20)

The 49ers signed Dial to a three-year extension this offseason after emerging as a starting defensive tackle last season. Dial had slowly worked his way into the lineup after the team drafted him in 2013. This year, the line depth is improved on last year, with the development of Arik Armstead last year, and the addition of DeForest Buckner and Ronald Blair this year. There is some fan discussion of Dial playing nose tackle if Ian Williams and Glenn Dorsey are sidelined, but my guess is Purcell handles that and Dial is playing defensive end in the 3-4 base.

21-30
21. Garrett Celek, TE
22. Bruce Ellington, WR
23. Ahmad Brooks, OLB
24. Zane Beadles, OG
25. Glenn Dorsey, DT
26. Dontae Johnson, CB
27. Eli Harold, OLB
28. Gerald Hodges, ILB
29. Michael Wilhoite, ILB
30. Blake Bell, TE

31-40
31. Tank Carradine, OLB
32. Kenneth Acker, CB
33. Eric Rogers, WR
34. Vance McDonald, TE
35. Quinton Patton, WR
36. Andrew Tiller, OG
37. Will Redmond, CB
38. Bradley Pinion, P
39. Shaun Draughn, RB
40. DuJuan Harris, RB

41-50
41. Ronald Blair, DT
42. Tony Jerod-Eddie, DT
43. Mike Purcell, DT
44. DeAndre Smelter, WR
45. Keith Reaser, CB
46. Rashard Robinson, CB
47. Trent Brown, OT
48. Fahn Cooper, OL
49. L.J. McCray, S
50. Kyle Nelson, LS

51-60
51. Marcus Cromartie, DB
52. Ray-Ray Armstrong, ILB
53. Jerome Simpson, WR
54. DeAndrew White, WR
55. Corey Lemonier, OLB
56. John Theus, OL
57. Kelvin Taylor, RB
58. Brandon Thomas, OG
59. Marcus Martin, OG/C
60. Erik Pears, OT

61-70
61. Aaron Burbridge, WR
62. Mike Davis, RB
63. Jeff Driskel, QB
64. Ian Silberman, OL
65. Shayne Skov, ILB
66. Nick Bellore, ILB
67. Dres Anderson, WR
68. Devon Cajuste, WR
69. Kaleb Ramsey, DT
70. DiAndre Campbell, WR

71-80
71. Chris Davis, CB
72. Busta Anderson TE
73. Marcus Rush, OLB
74. Prince Charles Iworah, CB
75. Alex Balducci, OL
76. Kendall Gaskins, RB
77. Thad Lewis, QB
78. Bryce Treggs, WR
79. Jason Fanaika, OLB
80. Colin Kelly, OL

81-90
81. Darren Lake, DT
82. Jered Bell, S
83. Garrison Smith, DT
84. Demetrius Cherry, DL
85. Blake Muir, OL
86. Je’Ron Hamm, TE
87. Wynton McManis, ILB
88. John Lunsford, K
89. Lenny Jones, OLB
90. Norman Price, OL