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49ers sign RB Austin Walter after tryout

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The team needed to fill their last roster spot

Florida International v Rice Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

When the San Francisco 49ers announced that they signed five of their draft picks and 10 undrafted free agents, they still had one roster spot open. On Saturday, the 49ers signed former rice running back Austin Walter after a tryout.

Walter announced on his Instagram page as well.

He ran a 4.49 40-yard dash at the regional Combine. Here are some notes from his workout:

Walter had a few hiccups on his starts in the 40-yard dash and shuttle drills. Once he settled in he posted times of 4.54 in the 40 and 6.75 in the three cone drill. The pass catching drills are where he shined the brightest, including a nice acrobatic catch on a ball throw with a bit too much juice over the middle. He hauled in everything and moved quickly in the agility drills.

That 3-cone time is impressive.

He’s 5-foot-7 and 190 pounds. Walter had 1,089 yards from scrimmage and found the end zone six times in 2018, including over 500 yards both on the ground and through the air. It’s pretty clear Kyle Shanahan favors running backs that can bring value in the passing game. It’ll be an upfield battle to make the roster, but if he can impress enough with his ability through the air, or on special teams, you never know. Walter did return kicks for Rice as well.