49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

August 30, 2008
Ugly Saturday: The 49ers drop down to 53; Moore on IR

The 49ers reached the 53-man limit by releasing 21 players and placing one, Jay Moore, on injured reserve. Here are the some of the notable released players I talked to today:

Thomas Clayton: The running back looked far and away better than he did last season, but there simply was no room on the roster. Clayton said he believes there will be some interest from other teams when he goes on the waiver wire. If not, he has been assured of a practice-squad spot. "I just feel like I'm better than the practice squad right now," he said. "But my spirits are good. I feel good inside. I'm just ready to play." Clayton certainly has some good game film, especially from preseason Game No. 3 in Chicago. In fact, the Bears might want to take a look ...

Larry Grant. Grant said he was surprised to have been cut, especially since he had a good game last night. He figured at the very least he would be an asset on special teams. "They might be bringing me back for the practice squad," he said. "You have to start somewhere. I've always wanted to be a 49er. I've been a fan all my life."

Atiyyah Ellison: Ellison played a lot of nose tackle Saturday night. The difficult part - it was the first time all offseason he had played there. Both Aubrayo Franklin and Ronald Fields got nicked in the game. And the 49ers' No. 3 NT, Joe Cohen, had been released the week prior. Ellison said he figures he will be picked up on the practice squad. He says his versatility gives him an advantage. "That's the good thing for me - I can play both end and nose."

Louis Holmes: The undrafted rookie also has been earmarked for the practice squad. Holmes was limited to playing defensive ends on third downs last night. He told me that coaches said he was uncomfortable playing linebacker. But Holmes said he felt plenty comfortable there. He said he thought he was playing the best football of his life this summer, which is a testament to good coaching.

The other who were cut are headlined by receiver Ashley Lelie, who missed nearly all of training camp and who was held without a catch last night. Here's the rest of the released list: LB Dennis Haley, FB Moran Norris, DT LaJuan Ramsey, T Alan Reuber, T Joe Toledo, CB Markus Curry, DT Walter Curry, WR Robert Ortiz, T Chris Patrick, WR Jerard Rabb, P Ricky Schmitt, WR Dominique Zeigler, WR Cam Colvin, G Brian de la Puente, TE J.J. Finley,and S D.J. Parker.

Obviously, the 49ers decided to load up on defensive backs. Keith Lewis and Marcus Hudson were both on the bubble throughout training camp, but both made the team. Still, more changes could come tomorrow after Scot McC,loughan and his staff scours the waiver wire.

Here are the injury updates:

As expected, Jay Moore will go on injured reserve after tearing his biceps in the first quarter yesterday. Moore said the injured happened on kickoff coverage when he extended his arm to make a tackle. He said it was like deja vu -- he suffered a severe ankle injury in the preseason finale last year. The difference is that last season he had to wait to see how bad the injury was. This year, he knew immediately that he would go on IR. He'll have surgery Tuesday ...

I wasn't able to catch Aubrayo Franklin, who injured his knee on the first series yesterday. However, i can tell you he walked to a waiting SUV without crutches, without a limp and without anything wrapped on the knee. He seems ok ...

I'm told that Parys Haralson's shoulder is nothing to worry about and that he ought to be able to play in the opener against Ariz. ... Just talked with Haralson. His left arm was in a sling but said he thought he'd be good to go for the opener.

-- Matt Barrows

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Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.

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