Ashley Lelie, who had a 1,000-yard receiving year in 2004, was one of 21 players waived as the 49ers got down to the 53-player NFL roster limit Saturday.
Lelie, who had his breakout 2004 season with the Denver Broncos (54 catches, 1,084 yards, seven touchdowns), was a disappointment in his only season with the Niners, hauling in 10 passes for 115 yards and no TDs in 15 games.
Among the other veterans waived was fullback Moran Norris, who started five games last year, as well as defensive tackle Atiyyah Ellison, linebacker Dennis Haley, defensive tackle LaJuan Ramsey, offensive tackle Alan Reuber and offensive tackle Joe Toledo.
Rookies Cam Colvin (wide receiver, De La Salle High School of Concord), Brian de la Puente (guard, Cal), Larry Grant (linebacker, City College of San Francisco), J.J. Finley (tight end), Louis Holmes (defensive end) and D.J. Parker (safety) were also waived.
First-year players cut were running back Thomas Clayton, cornerback Markus Curry, defensive tackle Walter Curry, wide receiver Robert Ortiz, offensive tackle Chris Patrick, wide receiver Jerard Rabb, punter Ricky Schmitt and wide receiver Dominique Zeigler.
Linebacker Jay Moore was placed on injured reserve after sustaining a biceps injury in Friday’s exhibition finale, a 20-17 loss to the San Diego Chargers. First-year guard Ramiro Pruneda was transferred to the practice squad as part of the NFL’s international practice squad program.
Some of the young players could return as the Niners can begin signing players to their practice squad Sunday.
The 49ers open the season a week from Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals at Candlestick Park. Kickoff is set for 1:15 p.m.