Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports



The San Francisco 49ers have placed TE Vance McDonald on the injured reserve list. The news was first reported by ESPN Insider Adam Caplan and then confirmed by the team.


At the end of the first half of Sunday's overtime loss to the New York Jets, McDonald left the game with a shoulder injury. Earlier today, 49ers head coach Chip Kelly did not have an update on the injury and said that he was waiting to hear from the team's medical staff on the condition of the tight end. Apparently, the injury was significant enough to end McDonald's season.

This news comes just three days after the team signed McDonald to a five-year extension reportedly worth up to $35 million and including $16 million guaranteed. He was scheduled to become a free agent after this season and was coming to the end of his four-year, $3.6 million rookie contract.

Kelly told reporters today that he was asked for the OK to start negotiating an extension for McDonald. "I don't negotiate contracts, but they asked me if I wanted Vance back and I said, 'Yes.'"

McDonald was having the best season of his career. He already had 391 yards receiving – a career best. McDonald also had four touchdowns this season. He was selected by the 49ers in the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft out of Rice.


Today, Kelly was asked what he sees out of the tight end to indicate that he should be around long-term. "I think he fits in very nicely in terms of what we're trying to do," he said. "I think he's a mismatch in the pass game for some people. If you try to match him with a linebacker, obviously his speed is probably better than any linebacker that is going to cover him. He has a size matchup when you put a defensive back on him. We've exploited some teams with those matchups for us.

"I don't know the number of plays over 60 (yards), but he's had a few of those long catch and runs in mismatch situations where we've found him and the speed that he has at the tight end spot is kind of rare and unique for him. Obviously, he was a guy when you look at the market for tight ends, kind of where he fits you, you're kind of hoping you can keep your own guys home and that was the decision there."

To take McDonald's place on the roster, the 49ers announced that they have claimed OL Josh Allen off of waivers from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Allen originally signed with the Buccaneers as an undrafted free agent on May 12, 2014 out of the University of Louisiana-Monroe. Following his release from Tampa Bay later that offseason, he spent time on the Green Bay Packers' practice squad before returning to Tampa Bay.


While Allen was elevated to the Buccaneers' active roster and appeared in three games in 2014, he has spent the majority of the past two seasons on Tampa Bay's practice squad.

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