San Francisco announced the signings on Monday. They are both one-year deals. The 49ers placed tight end Cole Hikutini and safety Jaquiski Tartt on the injured reserve list in corresponding moves. San Francisco added offensive lineman Andrew Lauderdale to the practice squad.
Murphy, 30, entered the NFL as a fourth-round pick by the Oakland Raiders in the 2009 NFL Draft. The University of Florida product had his best season during his rookie campaign, hauling in 34 passes for 521 yards and four touchdowns for the Raiders. He joined the Carolina Panthers in 2012 before signing with the New York Giants in 2013. Murphy played the 2014 and 2015 seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He had 10 catches for 198 yards in 2015. Murphy signed with the 49ers on July 31, but was waived on Sept. 1.
Coach Kyle Shanahan hinted at the signing Monday afternoon, before it became official. He also gave reporters an update on who would be the team's slot wide receiver.
"We're going to do it by committee," Shanahan told reporters. "We're going to have to move a couple guys in there, move a few guys around. No one has truly just owned that position like Trent has. Other guys are capable of doing it. Cole would have been a good guy to do there. Even using a tight end at that spot, losing him too, so we're just going to have to adjust with the guys that we have."
Paulsen, 30, has just one target in seven games this season for the 49ers. He played the first five seasons of his career with the Washington Redskins before joining the Chicago Bears last offseason. The 6-foot-5, 268-pound target had three catches for 15 yards last season. He started 12 games for the Bears. Paulsen was released on Oct. 24 before reuniting with the franchise Monday.
Lauderdale, 23, joined the 49ers on June 9 as an undrafted rookie free agent. He was waived on Sept. 1. Hikutini was promoted to the 49ers' active roster on Oct. 14. He had two catches for 15 yards in four contests. Tartt had 54 tackles, three passes defenses, an interception and 0.5 sack in nine starts this season for San Francisco.