The San Francisco 49ers made a notable roster move on Monday. They announced the signing of running back DuJuan Harris, and made room for him by placing Will Redmond on injured reserve. Redmond suffered a torn ACL last year. He made it back into game action the latter half of the preseason, but it would seem there are still some concerns.
One notable aspect of the move is that by placing him on injured reserve today instead of at the 53-man roster cutdown, the team can bring him back as their one return option. There used to be the “return designation” for injured reserve, but that has been removed. Now, if a team places a player on IR after the initial cut-down to 53 players, they reserve the option to bring him back. They can only use that once however.
It seemed odd that the 49ers kept only three running backs, with Shaun Draughn and Mike Davis behind Carlos Hyde. Harris did not have to go through waivers, so one possibility is they told him they wanted to wait to put Redmond on IR with the return option, rather than before. Chip Kelly will meet with the media later this week, so we’ll see what he has to say.