Photo courtesy of the San Francisco 49ers

Photo courtesy of the San Francisco 49ers


John Lynch explains the 49ers re-signing Jason Verrett

May 3, 2022 at 8:56 AM--


The San Francisco 49ers re-signed oft-injured cornerback Jason Verrett to a one-year deal on Monday. For the team, it was worth the risk. When Verrett, who entered 2021 as the 49ers' starting cornerback, is healthy, he plays like one of the top corners in the league. The problem is his healthy seasons seem few and far between.

Verrett has been in the NFL for eight seasons and has landed on injured reserve during six of those. Verrett's two healthy seasons, though, were impressive. In 2015, he recorded 47 tackles, three interceptions, a touchdown, and 12 passes defensed, earning a career-high Pro Football Focus grade of 88.4 and Pro Bowl selection.

Verrett signed with the 49ers in 2019 and again struggled with injuries in that first season with the team. But a year later, he was a bright spot in an otherwise forgettable season, recording a career-high 60 tackles, two interceptions, and seven passes defensed. San Francisco felt so good about Verrett's ability to be a starter that the team opted not to bring back Richard Sherman.

Then, Verrett suffered an ACL injury during Week 1 of the 2021 season.

"We all know what Jason's been through, and it's been a lot," general manager John Lynch said Monday on KNBR's Murph & Mac show. "This guy's ability and passion for the game, his makeup, his toughness, it's all to be admired. It hurt our heart. It hurt Jason. He's a number one corner for us. For it to happen to him yet again was crushing. But he's a guy you don't give up on. We're certainly not going to. It's a lot to ask for his body to recover again, but if there's someone that we believe can do it, it's Jason.

"We felt like, number one, he's earned that opportunity with us. And number two, I think he's worth giving it to because he's done this before. You do have to ask yourself at some point if it keeps happening. But we have a 90-man roster, and during the offseason, when you talk about is he worthy of that? Certainly, he is. So we're going to give it another attempt."

Verrett's signing came two days after the 49ers used two of their nine draft picks on cornerbacks—Samuel Womack and Tariq Castro-Fields. They will all join a cornerback group that already includes Emmanuel Moseley, Ambry Thomas, Deommodore Lenoir, and newcomer Charvarius Ward.

If Verrett can return to form after the devastating injury, that is some solid depth at the position.

"He was crushed after it happened, and I wasn't so sure he'd want to play again," Lynch continued. "But we kept in touch, had conversations, and that desire to come back was there, and it was burning hard. So, at that point, Kyle (Shanahan) and I just said, 'You know what? It's definitely worth it.'

"Our team loves him. The fact that he stayed around all year and was there coaching guys, and just being there for our team was just huge to us. So, we're happy to come to an agreement with Jason and give him that opportunity to rehab under us. And we'll see where that goes."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Lynch below.



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