49ers ponder signing another running back, third quarterback to roster


SANTA CLARA -- Two weeks ago, the 49ers brought in seven quarterbacks to work out after Jimmy Garoppolo sustained his season-ending knee injury.

While Tom Savage and Matt Simms appear to be quarterbacks the 49ers would strongly consider as the No. 3 behind starter C.J. Beathard and backup Nick Mullens, the team shifted focus to running back Monday.

Coach Kyle Shanahan said the 49ers brought in a group of running backs to work out with Matt Breida looking doubtful to play next Monday against the Green Bay Packers.

Shanahan confirmed that Breida did not sustain a high ankle sprain, but he described the injury as “still a serious sprain.” Breida sustained a mid-ankle sprain, a source told NBC Sports Bay Area. He might not be available to play in Week 6.

“It’s better news than anticipated, but it’s still not great news,” Shanahan said. “We’ll see the next couple of days.”

Veteran Alfred Morris is the only other true running back on the 49ers' roster. The No. 3 back, Raheem Mostert, primarily is a special-teams player who fumbled on his first carry Sunday in the 49ers’ 28-18 loss to the Arizona Cardinals.

Among the other running backs the 49ers worked out Monday was Jeremy McNichols, who spent last season on the practice squad and was cut this summer after training camp. The 49ers do not appear to have any interest in bringing back Joe Williams, a 2017 fourth-round draft pick who spent last season on injured reserve and was cut before the start of the regular season this year.

The 49ers also will consider promoting undrafted rookie Jeff Wilson from the practice squad, Shanahan said.

The 49ers have not made a move to sign a No. 3 quarterback because of injury concerns at other positions. After all, any quarterback added at this point likely would be used on the scout team at other positions, such as wide receiver and safety, until the player is needed in place of Beathard or Mullens.

“I see a similar situation now as last week,” Shanahan said. “We talk about this stuff every Monday.”

Wide receiver Dante Pettis (knee) will not play against Green Bay, Shanahan said. The 49ers are unsure whether receiver Marquise Goodwin (hamstring/thigh) will be available. The club also has injury concerns on the offensive line with Joe Staley, Weston Richburg and Mike Person all nursing knee injuries.

Tight ends George Kittle (knee) and Garrett Celek (quadriceps), defensive backs Richard Sherman (calf) and Jimmie Ward (hamstring), and linebacker Reuben Foster (shoulder) might be limited in practices, too.

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