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49ers sign veteran safety Tashaun Gipson; waived/injured WR Austin Mack

A sign that Jimmie Ward won’t be returning to the lineup soon?

New York Giants v Chicago Bears Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images

Kyle’s update, Monday, August 22, 1:35 PM PT: The 49ers waived/injured WR Austin Mack to make room for newly signed safety Tashaun Gipson. The next wave of roster cuts is due by 1 PM PT on Tuesday. The Niners will need to release five players to trim the roster to 80.

Kyle’s update, Monday, August 22, 8:08 AM PT: The 49ers have officially signed Tashaun Gipson. This comes after some questionable tackling and run fits at safety during the second preseason game. Gipson, if called upon to play, brings reliability to the position.

It’s unclear when San Francisco 49ers' safety Jimmie Ward will return to the lineup as he deals with a “pretty bad” hamstring injury. The current safeties are Talanoa Hufanga, Tarvarius Moore, George Odum, and Dontae Johnson.

ESPN’s Field Yates reported the 49ers worked out veteran safety Tashaun Gipson. This could be a sign that the team is unhappy with its current safety play, needs a camp body, or isn’t anticipating Ward’s return anytime soon. It could also be all of the above.

Gipson comes with plenty of experience, as he started 12 games for the Chicago Bears in 2021. Gipson’s played over 1,000 snaps in four of the last six seasons. This feels like a potential emergency signing as Ward recovers.

The Broncos released former fifth-round pick Jamar Johnson earlier this week. That was an intriguing option. Johnson only logged 38 snaps as a rookie, and they all came on special teams. And while Johnson might not be someone who can produce right away, the idea of having him on the practice squad sounds appealing.

As for Gipson, you don’t have to do any second guessing. Gipson is a 10-year veteran, and you know what you’re getting out of him. On the other hand, he just turned 32, so you wonder how much juice he has left in the tank. Still, the coaching staff loves leaning on veterans. We’ll see if the 49ers were impressed by Gipson’s workout and sign him ahead of their second preseason game.