San Francisco 49ers

49ers sign ex-Raiders tight end to practice squad

Offensive tackle Donald Hawkins was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Philadelphia Eagles last season. He’s spent time with Cleveland, Dallas and Miami.
Offensive tackle Donald Hawkins was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Philadelphia Eagles last season. He’s spent time with Cleveland, Dallas and Miami. The Associated Press

The 49ers bulked up their practice squad Monday with an offensive tackle and a tight end. The team signed tackle Donald Hawkins, who was released from the Dolphins practice squad earlier this month, as well as tight end Brian Leonhardt, who started three games for the Raiders last season.

Leonhardt, listed at 6-5, 255 pounds, played collegiately at Bemidji State, which also is where 49ers general manager Trent Baalke went to school. He had six receptions for 35 yards and one touchdown for Oakland last year. He was waived in September, signed to the Browns practice squad on October 20 and released by the Browns on November 11.

Hawkins, listed at 6-4, 305 pounds, originally was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Eagles last year. He’s spent time with Philadelphia, Cleveland, Dallas and Miami.

The 49ers recently promoted cornerbacks Marcus Cromartie and Chris Davis from the practice squad. Both played in the recent win over the Falcons.

During training camp, the 49ers had eight tight ends they thought were capable of playing in the regular season. After trading three of them, they have three -- Garrett Celek, Vance McDonald and Blake Bell -- on the active roster. Before Leonhardt’s signing, they had no tight ends on the practice squad. Rookie Rory Anderson is on injured reserve.

Matt Barrows: @mattbarrows, read more about the team at sacbee.com/sf49ers.

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