Roster Make Up
August 30 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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There are several alternatives for how the 49ers compose their 2002, 53 man roster. In each situation the team will be able to keep a few extra players that they believe are great projects on the depth charges, and possible future starters for the team. But with every addition to one position, a spot has to be taken away from another position. Below, find some possibilities for the 49ers 2002 opening day roster.
Ideally the 49ers would carry a larger roster of the following players:
3 QBs - Garcia, Rattay, Doman
5 WRs - Owens, Stokes, Streets, Wilson, Jordan
6 RBs - Hearst, Barlow, Beasley, Smith, Jackson, Robertson
3 TEs - Johnson, Swift, Anelli
10 OLs - Deese, Fiore, Newberry, Stone, Gragg, Willig, Lynch, Costa, Heitman, Kosier
10 DL - Okeafor, Engleberger, Young, Stubblefield, Carter, Moran, Flanigan, McGrew, Davis, Schlect
7 LB - Peterson, Smith, Ulbrich, Winborne, Rasheed, Strong, Moore
5 CB - Plummer, Webster, Rumph, Williams, Holman
4 S - Bronson, Parish, Heard, Cota
4 ST - Cortez, Chandler, Baker, Jennings
A little math = 57 players, 4 too many.
Several positions are pretty much set in stone in terms of numbers. QB, CB, and S appear to be those positions. In every situation below, the team can drop a place kicker to add one of the players it is cutting.
The team drops to 9 OL, 9 DL, 6LB, and 2 TE.
In this scenario, Kyle Kosier a rookie would be a candidate for the practice squad. The team would have a tough choice to make between Davis and Schlect on the DL, and Anelli would be another rookie the team would try and put on the practice squad. The interesting part of this is Davis has provided a better pass rush, but Schlect is a more versatile lineman. Having to choose between Strong and Moore at linebacker would be a very difficult decision.
The team drops to 8 OL, 8 DL
Having 8 solid veterans on the defensive line, could give the 49ers the luxury of dropping to only 8. But Davis and Shclect are to players that will be hard to walk away from. The offensive line would be losing Kosier and likely Costa as they are very pleased with Heitmann. Losing Costa would be hard to swallow.
The team drops to 8 DL, 9 OL, and 6 LB
The 49ers would be able to keep Costa at OL. There losses at DL would be tough to stomach. Again the choice of Strong or Moore at linebacker would be tough to make.
The team drops to 8 DL, 9 OL, and 2 TE
This situation would be much like scenario number three, but the team would be losing Anelli instead of having to choose between Moore and Strong.
The team drops to 9 DL, 9 OL, 4 WR, 5 RB
The 49ers would be able to keep Davis or Schlect and Costa, while losing Kosier. The hard part about this formation is that the team would be cutting a talented receiver in Jordan and one of Terry Jackson or Jamal Robertson. Robertson is the more likely of the two to be cut.
By going with 8 DLs and losing both Davis and Schlect the 49ers could choose between Robertson/Jackson and Jordan.
The team drops to 9 DL, 9 OL, 6 LB, and either 4 WR or 5 RB
The team would again be faced with losing Davis or Schlect on the DL. Kosier would be out. The team would have a hard decision to make between Moore and Strong at linebacker, and another hard decision to make between Jordan and Robertson/Jackson.
The team drops to 8 DL, 9 OL, 5 LB
The 49ers would be losing two talented backups at linebacker in Moore and Strong, and both Schlect and Davis on the defensive line. Kosier would again be out, but the team could carry Robertson and Jordan on the offense.
In scenario #7, the team could drop to 8 OL in order to keep Moore or Strong, but would then be pushing Costa out of a spot. The team is not likely to go with 5 LBs given that Ulbrich will be out for at least a few games at the start of the season.
So there you have it ladies and gentleman. The 49ers roster make up will likely stem from one of those seven combinations and will be affected drastically by how many place kickers it decides to hold onto. The team could of course go with a guy like Quincy Stewart at linebacker or Ty Wise on the offensive line, and suddenly everything would be different, but the above are my best attempts at assembling the 49ers 2002 opening day roster. Itís a drastically different roster composition than last year, where the team actually carried fewer than 53 players all season, because of salary cap concerns. It should be noted that only 46 players are active for each game.
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