Daniel Helm

49ers Place TE Garrett Celek On IR

Garrett Celek‘s eighth 49ers season will end after five games. The 49ers placed the veteran on IR, doing so barely a month after activating him from their PUP list. They promoted tight end Daniel Helm from their practice squad to take Celek’s roster spot.

This keeps a brutal injury stretch going for San Francisco, which has seen Richard Sherman, Dee Ford, Weston Richburg, defensive tackle D.J. Jones and Marquise Goodwin go down in recent days.

A back injury will shelve Celek again. He missed the first half of the 49ers’ bounce-back season due to a back malady that required offseason surgery. The 49ers have George Kittle, Levine ToiloloRoss Dwelley and now Helm as their active-roster tight ends.

Rostered for his blocking prowess, Celek played more than 20 snaps in just one of the five games for which he was active. He did not catch a pass. The 31-year-old tight end’s four-year contract expires at season’s end.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Sunday NFL Transactions: NFC West

Listed below are the Sunday roster moves for the four NFC West teams. Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline yesterday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters, claiming players off waivers or signing guys who clear waivers. Those transactions for the Cardinals, Rams, Seahawks and 49ers are noted below.

Additionally, teams can begin constructing their 10-man practice squads today. You can check out our glossary entry on practice squads to brush up on those changes, as well as all the other guidelines that govern the 10-man units, whose players practice with the team but aren’t eligible to suit up on Sundays.

Here are Sunday’s NFC West transactions, which will continue to be updated throughout the day.

Arizona Cardinals

Los Angeles Rams

San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks

49ers Cut Joshua Garnett, Reach Max

The 49ers got down to the 53-man roster maximum by releasing 24 players in total on Saturday, including former first-round pick Joshua Garnett.

The Niners used the No. 28 pick to select Garnett in 2016, but they never saw much from him at the pro level. The Stanford product started in eleven of his 15 games as a rookie, but even then, his performance was underwhelming – Garnett racked up penalties and didn’t excel in run blocking or pass blocking. Garnett then missed all of 2017 after undergoing knee surgery and only saw action as a reserve in seven games last year. At a rate of $10.35MM, it made little sense to keep Garnett for 2020, especially since the option would have been guaranteed for injury.

This year, Garnett is said to be healthy, but that ensured little in terms of performance, so he’s out. The Niners will save $1.7MM against $1.2MM in dead money.

Jordan Matthews was said to have had a strong camp, but the 27-year-old wide receiver wasn’t able to stick in SF. He inked a one-year, $1.8MM deal with the Niners in March, but he’ll exit with just his $300K signing bonus in hand.

Aside from Garnett and Matthews, here’s the rest of the Niners’ cuts:


DB Antone Exum Jr.

LB Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles

DL Jamell Garcia-Williams

DL Kevin Givens

S Marcell Harris

TE Daniel Helm

WR Malik Henry

LB Elijah Lee

LB David Mayo

DL Damontre Moore

LB LaRoy Reynolds

G Ross Reynolds

S Tyree Robinson

QB Wilton Speight

WR Chris Thompson

DL Jordan Thompson

OL Najee Toran

DL Jeremiah Valoaga

RB Austin Walter

RB Jeff Wilson Jr.


DB Adrian Colbert

OL Andrew Lauderdale

49ers Release TE Niles Paul

Niles Paul‘s stint with the 49ers didn’t last long. The veteran tight end is being released by San Francisco, a source told Field Yates of ESPN.com (Twitter link).

In a corresponding roster move, the team claimed tight end Daniel Helm off waivers from the Chargers. Paul had just been signed last week. The former Redskins and Jaguars tight end had a connection to head coach Kyle Shanahan from their time in Washington together, but the team clearly didn’t like what they saw from the Nebraska product during his brief time in camp.

Paul has spent eight years in the league, his first seven with the Redskins and then one in Jacksonville. By far his best season as a receiver came in 2014, when he had 39 catches for 507 yards. With Garrett Celek on the shelf, and looking likely to miss some regular season time, the 49ers have been looking for some tight end depth behind George Kittle.

Helm is the latest they’ll be taking a look at, a rookie undrafted free agent from Duke. He was never a huge receiving threat for the Blue Devils, gaining between 235 and 271 yards in each of his final three college seasons.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

More Minor NFL Transactions: 8/1/19

We’ve already posted one round of minor transactions, but NFL clubs keep making moves:

Baltimore Ravens

Jacksonville Jaguars

Los Angeles Chargers

Minnesota Vikings

New Orleans Saints

Seattle Seahawks

Tennessee Titans

Washington Redskins

Chargers Sign 19 UDFAs

As teams officially announce their undrafted free agent classes, we’ll be posting them. The Chargers are the second team to announce, following the Steelers. Los Angeles inked a massive group, bringing in 19 players:

As the Chargers pointed out in their release, they’re annually one of the best teams at unearthing solid undrafted free agents. They’ve had an undrafted rookie make the team for 22 consecutive seasons, which is the longest streak in the NFL. In each of the last four seasons, they’ve had at least three undrafted rookies make the team.

One of their best undrafted finds in recent years, Tyrell Williams, just inked a huge four-year, $44MM deal with the Raiders. With their huge class this year, they opted for a lot of small school and FCS prospects. Tyler Newsome is an interesting signing since the Chargers had a terrible punting situation all of last year. They ended up releasing Drew Kaser in the middle of the year, and Newsome should have a good chance to make the team. Volson was the center for Easton Stick, who the Chargers just drafted in the fifth round, during their time at North Dakota State.