October 10th, 2016 at 12:41pm CST by Zachary Links
The 49ers announced that they have signed cornerback JaCorey Shepherd. Shepherd will take the place of cornerback Chris Davis, who was placed on injured reserve with a knee injury.
The signing reunites Shepherd, a 2015 draft pick of the Eagles, with coach Chip Kelly. In college, Shepherd started out as a wide receiver but didn’t find his footing until he was turned into a defensive back as a sophomore. As a junior, Shepherd had 45 total tackles, including two tackles for a loss, and ten pass deflections, putting him on the map nationally. His stats dropped a bit as a senior, but he still showed enough to become a late draft pick.
Davis, a cornerback/kick returner, was forced out of Thursday night’s game against the Cardinals. He was initially listed as questionable for this Sunday against the Bills, but he is now likely done for the season.
The 49ers have placed running back Mike Davis on the injured reserve list with the designation to return, the team announced today in a press release. Davis may be the last player this season to get that designation, since anyone placed on IR-DTR after this week wouldn’t be eligible to return in the second half of the regular season.
In addition to moving Davis – who can return for Week 17 – to IR-DTR, the Niners also placed safety L.J. McCray on season-ending injured reserve. To fill the two newly-opened spots on the 53-man roster, San Francisco promoted a pair of cornerbacks, Marcus Cromartie and Chris Davis, from the team’s practice squad.
As Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle points out (via Twitter), it makes sense for the 49ers to promote multiple cornerbacks to their active roster due to the injury problems they’re having in the secondary. Cornerbacks Tramaine Brock (shin), Kenneth Acker (concussion), and Keith Reaser (ankle) are all listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against Atlanta.
The Niners have also seen their backfield ravaged by injuries, having placed Davis on IR-DTR after sending Reggie Bush to the IR list earlier this week. The team signed veteran backs Shaun Draughn and Pierre Thomas to fill in for this weekend’s contest.
The Titans worked out quarterback Christian Ponder, according to Terry McCormick of TitanInsider (Twitter links). The team also auditioned linebacker Yannik Cudjoe Virgil plus tight ends Michael Egnew, Kevin Greene, Connor Hamlett, and Ryan Taylor.
The 49ers also worked out Gillislee, Wilson tweets.
The 49ers worked out former Texans linebacker Lynden Trail and ex-Chargers corner Chris Davis, Wilson tweets. Davis, 24, signed with the Bolts in 2014 as a UDFA out of Auburn. The Chargers cut Davis on September 1st.
The Colts worked out offensive guards Ben Heenan and Donald Thomas on Saturday, Wilson tweets. Indianapolis also brought in linebacker Josh Martin for a visit, Wilson adds.
The Ravens promoted wide receiver Jeremy Butler from the taxi squad and waived running back Terrence Magee, according to ESPN.com’s Field Yates (via Twitter). Butler, 24, played college football at the University of Tennessee Martin and went undrafted in 2014.
The Chargers have waived cornerback Chris Davis off IR, according to ESPN.com’s Adam Caplan (on Twitter).
The Chargers are the latest team to officially announce their cuts down to 75 players, and the team’s four Tuesday moves involve a handful of injured players. According to a press release, San Diego has waived/injured the following four players:
WR Torrence Allen
CB Chris Davis
S Gordon Hill
G Melvin Meggs
Each of those players will have to pass through waivers unclaimed in order to remain with the Chargers’ organization. Assuming they do, they’ll revert to San Diego’s injured reserve list.
Having trimmed their roster to 75 players, the Chargers will now have to make 22 more moves in order to get down to a 53-man roster by Saturday afternoon.
As part of their NFL training camp tour, SiriusXM NFL Radio was on location at Chargers camp tonight, and spoke with several key members of the team, as well as general manager Tom Telesco and head coach Mike McCoy. The decision-making duo shared a few interesting comments, which we’ll round up below (all links via SiriusXM’s Twitter):
While he was encouraged by 2013’s results, Telesco knew heading into the offseason that he needed to add speed, athleticism, and youth to the roster, as well as finding more defensive playmakers. In the GM’s view, the 2014 roster is “definitely stronger” than last year’s because of its depth.
Per Telesco, the Chargers were monitoring the status of Brandon Flowers throughout the offseason, even before he was cut by the Chiefs, and jumped at the opportunity to sign him when he became available. Before the Chiefs released him, Flowers was rumored to be on the trade block, so it seems likely that San Diego kicked the tires on the possibility of a deal.
Former Auburn cornerback Chris Davis, the hero of last season’s Iron Bowl, has been very impressive since signing with the Chargers as an undrafted free agent, and has a legitimate shot to stick with the club, says Telesco.
According to McCoy, San Diego headed into the draft prioritizing the cornerback and outside linebacker positions, and managed to address both spots in the first two rounds, selecting Jason Verrett and Jeremiah Attaochu.
McCoy also praised Chargers owner Dean Spanos for allowing him and Telesco to continue to implement the plan they prepared in 2013.
The Texans continue to do their due diligence on every player near the top of the draft board, as they’re set to host Texas A&M offensive tackle Jake Matthews for a visit this week, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter). Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk suggests that the Texans’ myriad pre-draft visits with top prospects could be designed to keep teams guessing about which player Houston actually wants, laying the groundwork to potentially trade down from No. 1. Meanwhile, Rapoport adds (via Twitter) that Matthews will visit the Falcons before heading to Houston later in the week for his Texans visit.
Here are a few more miscellaneous draft notes, as we inch a little closer to May 8:
After meeting with the Dolphins on Monday, Clemson wideout Martavis Bryant is visiting the Colts today, according to Aaron Wilson of the National Football Post. Wilson also adds the Panthers and Steelers to the list of clubs that have hosted Bryant for visits so far.
In a separate NFP report, Wilson provides an update on Liberty cornerback Walt Aikens, who is visiting the Colts, Packers, and Bengals this week. According to Wilson, in addition to previously reported visits and workouts, Aikens has also visited the Dolphins, Chiefs, and Buccaneers, and worked out for Cowboys and Jaguars.
According to Jeff Dickerson of ESPN Chicago (via Twitter), the Bears traveled to Los Angeles late last month to conduct a private workout with UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr.
The Bills hosted Texas A&M receiver Mike Evans, USC offensive lineman Marcus Martin and Georgia Southern running back Jerick McKinnon today, says Mike Rodak of ESPN.com (Twitterlinks).
Arizona State defensive tackle Will Sutton has visited with a long list of teams, including the Patriots, Cardinals, Rams, and Lions, tweets ESPN.com’s Adam Caplan.
Auburn cornerback Chris Davis worked out for the Falcons, Colts, and Patriots, among other clubs, according to Caplan (via Twitter).