Last week, Tony Pauline of Draft Analyst reported that the San Francisco 49ers would likely be the Oakland Raiders' primary competition for Los Angeles Rams cornerback Trumaine Johnson once free agency begins on March 14.

On Monday, Pauline reported the 49ers to be the front-runners for Johnson.

"As previously posted last week, Trumaine Johnson is likely to end up with the San Francisco 49ers," writes Pauline, who has been reporting from the NFL Scouting Combine for the past week. "The Oakland Raiders want Johnson but do not have the cap space the Niners do. I'm also told the Dallas Cowboys want to sign Johnson but, like the Raiders, their cap space is limited compared to San Francisco."

The 49ers are slated to be among the top five NFL teams in terms of salary cap space, according to Neither the Raiders nor the Cowboys are in the top 20 with Dallas being among the teams with the least amount of available money.

RELATED The Sean Smith Effect: Is Cornerback Trumaine Johnson Worth Five Years and $68 Million? lists Johnson's market value at an average annual salary of about $13.6 million. He made $16.4 million in 2017 after being franchise tagged for the second-straight year.

Cornerback is a position in need of an upgrade for the 49ers, who ended the 2017 season with rookie Ahkello Witherspoon and impending free agent Dontae Johnson as starters.

Trumaine Johnson, who played college football at Montana, was a third-round draft pick by the then-St. Louis Rams in 2012. In six seasons with the Rams, he registered 328 combined tackles, 67 passes defensed, 18 interceptions, three of which were returned for touchdowns, and two forced fumbles.

Johnson finished 2017 with 65 combined tackles, 14 passes defensed, and two interceptions in 16 games and 15 starts.

Johnson's time in Los Angeles came to an end when it was reported that the Rams had agreed to a trade for Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters.


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