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49ers sign the USFL’s sack leader

Breeland Speaks, a former second round pick of the Kansas City Chiefs, is the newest member of the Niners. The team placed Anthony Averrett on the injured reserve list.

Michigan Panthers v Pittsburgh Maulers Photo by Jason Miller/USFL/Getty Images for USFL

The 49ers announced they signed defensive lineman Breeland Speaks to a one-year deal. To make room on the roster, the Niners placed cornerback Anthony Averett on the injured reserve list.

Speaks was the second round pick in the 2018 NFL Draft by the Kansas City Chiefs. He started four games and appeared in 16 games, where he had 1.5 sacks and three tackles for loss. Speaks also spent time on the practice squads of the New York Giants, Dallas Cowboys, and Buffalo Bills practice squads in 2021. Speaks has not played an NFL snap since 2019.

In 2022, Speaks played for the Michigan Panthers in the USFL. He led the league with nine sacks.

The 49ers are a bit banged up along the defensive line as Robert Beal Jr. and Drake Jackson have been sidelined due to various injuries. And, of course, Nick Bosa has yet to practice as he awaits a hefty contract extension.