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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


49ers place Deebo Samuel on injured reserve, will miss at least 3 games; promote 2 from practice squad

Sep 12, 2020 at 1:38 PM--


The San Francisco 49ers have announced that the team has placed Deebo Samuel on injured reserve. The move will force the second-year wide receiver to miss at least three games under the NFL's new injured-reserve rules, meaning the earliest he would be available is for Week 4 against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Samuel has not practiced with the team since suffering a Jones fracture in June. Head coach Kyle Shanahan had hoped that the receiver would be available for the team's Week 1 matchup against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, but the 49ers never cleared Samuel to practice this week.

Shanahan was asked on Friday why San Francisco had not yet placed Samuel on injured reserve.

"Because we believed he had a good chance to play this week," Shanahan responded. "It didn't go the way we hoped, but he'll still be day-to-day going on that next week. We felt there was a chance, so to make a decision that would be three weeks when we thought he did have a chance. We didn't think that would be very smart, but we'll see how next week goes.

"Also, it's something with the rules that because it happened before training camp started, which is considered a non-football injury, there was some reason we couldn't do that, either."

Samuel appeared in 15 games with 11 starts as a rookie last season. He registered 57 receptions for 802 yards with three receiving touchdowns to go along with 14 carries for 159 yards and three touchdowns on the ground. He also started each of the team's three postseason contests and added 10 receptions for 127 yards and six carries for 102 yards.

The 49ers have activated the following players from the practice squad:


The fact that no receiver was elevated from the practice squad bodes well for rookie wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk's availability. He sustained a hamstring injury during training camp but returned to practice this week.

The 49ers Communications staff provided the following rundowns.



Grasu (6-3, 301) was originally drafted by the Chicago Bears in the third round (71st overall) of the 2015 NFL Draft. Throughout his five-year career with the Bears (2015-17), Baltimore Ravens (2018 & 2019), Miami Dolphins (2018) and Tennessee Titans (2019), he has appeared in 18 games (13 starts) along the offensive line. In 2019, Grasu spent time with the Titans and Ravens, appearing in one game for Baltimore. He originally signed with the 49ers as a free agent on August 20, 2020, was released by the team on September 5 and was signed to the team's practice squad the following day.

A 29-year-old native of Encino, CA, Grasu spent five years (2010-14) at the University of Oregon where he started in each of the 50 games in which he appeared and earned First-Team All-Pac-12 three times in his career (2012-14).

Grasu will wear number 50.

Johnson (6-2, 200) originally entered the NFL as the second of two fourth-round draft picks (129th overall) by the 49ers in the 2014 NFL Draft. Throughout his seven-year career with San Francisco (2014-17 & 2019), the Seattle Seahawks (2018), Buffalo Bills (2018), Arizona Cardinals (2018) and Los Angeles Chargers (2019), he has appeared in 73 games (22 starts) and registered 151 tackles, 21 passes defensed and two interceptions, both of which were returned for touchdowns.

In 2019, Johnson re-signed with the 49ers on May 28, 2019 and was released on August 30, 2019. He signed with the Los Angeles Chargers and appeared in two games prior to being released on September 28, 2019. Johnson re-signed with San Francisco on October 3, 2019 and appeared in seven games and registered two tackles. He then re-signed with the team on April 13, 2020, was released by the team on September 5 and was signed to the team's practice squad the following day.

A 28-year-old native of Pennington, NJ, Johnson attended North Carolina State University. In 50 games (28 starts) over four seasons with the Wolfpack, he finished with 217 tackles, 10 passes defensed, 4.0 sacks, three interceptions and two forced fumbles. As a senior in 2013, he started all 12 games and registered 82 tackles, a team-high three interceptions, two passes defensed and one forced fumble.

Johnson will wear number 27.

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