Photo courtesy of the San Francisco 49ers

Photo courtesy of the San Francisco 49ers


Do the 49ers have issues at cornerback?

Rohan Chakravarthi
Nov 3, 2022 at 11:45 AM--


The San Francisco 49ers' cornerback room took a huge hit in Week 5 when Emmanuel Moseley suffered an ACL injury that will force him to miss the remainder of the 2022 season.

However, the 49ers had insurance in the form of defensive back Jason Verrett, whom they re-signed after the 30-year-old tore his ACL last season in Week 1 against the Detroit Lions.

But, eight weeks into the season, the 49ers haven't seen Verrett on the field yet, while the timeline is uncertain as to when he'll return to the field after experiencing a lack of progress in practice.

That leads to the question: do the 49ers have issues at cornerback?



Case 1: Jason Verrett returns


The 49ers expressed a form of confidence in Jason Verrett when activating him from the Physically Unable to Perform(PUP) list last Wednesday, signifying that they believe he can return at some point this season.

Had the 49ers not activated Verrett, the cornerback would've had to miss the entirety of the 2022 season as his three-week window of practicing while on the PUP list was coming to a close.

Now, if Jason Verrett does indeed return, head coach Kyle Shanahan has indicated that it will be in a starting capacity opposite of Charvarius Ward, which would provide the 49ers some much-needed depth at the position as they've been currently forced to play players away from their preferred locations.

As a result of Verrett's return, Deommodore Lenoir could fall back into the slot, where he showcased a level of comfortability at the beginning of the season, which would also improve the 49ers' tackling, given the Oregon product's ability in that space.

With Verrett, the 49ers could also return to primarily playing press-man coverage, which would get the most out of their defensive line by allowing DeMeco Ryans to be creative with certain formations and stunts that have generated pressure thus far this season.

Over the past few weeks, the 49ers have been relegated to playing softer coverage as Lenoir and cornerbacks Ambry Thomas and Samuel Womack aren't as strong in press coverage at the moment.

Against teams with weaker offensive lines, such as the Rams, the 49ers can bode well, as the opposing offense has to account for the presence in the trenches and implement a quick-game attack.

But, against teams with stronger offensive lines, such as the Chiefs, defensive backs don't have that security blanket, which allowed for several intermediate and deep completions against the backup corners.

With Verrett in the fold, assuming he's healthy, the 49ers can play to their style of defense, which will be very important if they make the playoffs.

Case 2: Jason Verrett doesn't return


If Jason Verrett is unable to return this season, the 49ers will likely have to continue trotting out Deommodore Lenoir along the outside, while placing Jimmie Ward in the slot.

This would be the worst-case scenario for the 49ers this season.

If this situation occurs, Lenoir would be relegated to the outside, decreasing his impact due to his lack of top-end speed and the lessened ability to showcase his run-fitting talent.

Additionally, Jimmie Ward would continue to play in the slot, which he clearly isn't comfortable with in a contract year.

Ward is suffering from a broken hand that requires him to play with a club, which mitigates the impact he can orchestrate with his hand placement.

Ward's ability to jam skill position players at the line of scrimmage with good hand placement has been his calling card in coverage, but he currently can't do that with his injury.

If Verrett doesn't return, Deommodore Lenoir will continue to see significant action on the outside, while Jimmie Ward will have to adapt to playing in the slot, making it tough for the 49ers to reach their Super Bowl aspirations.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.



1 Comment

  • BigAl
    Its not realistic to expect Verrett to be anything close to his 2020 level this year, if ever. Losing Mosely was a big deal and I think one of the young guys is going have to step up. I can only speculate as to how Womack mustve pissed off one of the defensive coaches
    Nov 3, 2022 at 4:36 PM
    0

LISTEN

Facebook Comments



More San Francisco 49ers News



49ers-Dolphins: Deebo Samuel returns to practice but Trent Williams exits with back issues

By David Bonilla
Dec 2

Deebo Samuel faked out reporters on Friday. The media saw the San Francisco 49ers wide receiver leave for the weight room as practice kicked off, causing reporters to assume he would not participate for the second consecutive day. Moments later, Samuel re-emerged and joined his teammates on the practice field, forcing several tweet corrections from the media on hand. Check that —he just re-emerged and is on the field. #emotionalrollercoaster



Raheem Mostert, Jeff Wilson say Dolphins have more talent than 49ers, a QB 'who can actually sling it'

By David Bonilla
Nov 27

With a big-time matchup between the San Francisco 49ers and Miami Dolphins quickly approaching, two former Niners have voiced their opinions about their new NFL team. While the Niners are focused on this afternoon's game against the New Orleans Saints, Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson Jr. have been speaking with Tyler Dunne of Go Long, sharing their thoughts on next weekend's opponent. Mostert was critical of how the 49ers reacted to his Week 1 injury last season. Head coach Kyle Shanahan initially anticipated the knee injury would keep the running back out for about eight weeks. However, Mostert instead opted to undergo season-ending surgery. "He knew how



49ers Notebook: Shanahan happy with backup RBs in Mitchell's absence; 49ers overcome unusual week; Saints' impressive streak snapped

By Kirk Larrabee
Nov 27

It was a strange week for the San Francisco 49ers, who had to work through an unusual schedule that saw them arrive home from their Monday night game in Mexico City in the early morning hours on Tuesday, followed by Thanksgiving on Thursday. Still, they managed to work through it and prepare themselves to play against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday, and in the end they came out on top with a 13-0 win. How did the 49ers work through that schedule? We'll look at that in this version of 49ers Notebook, along with some postgame thoughts from head coach Kyle Shanahan on the running back situation, a look at an impressive streak the 49ers snapped on Sunday, and much more. Let's get it started... (See also:



The 49ers' Defense is Becoming Elite Again: 5 Observations about Saints-49ers

By JD Salazar
Nov 28

This 2022 iteration of the 49ers is endlessly fascinating to watch. One of the best teams in football one week, getting humiliated the next. Back to the future, forward with the past. But as turbulent and ramshackle as it's been, the 49ers are morphing into a team ready to dominate in the playoffs, just as head coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch have always believed. Here are 5 observations from yesterday's win over the Saints. 1. The Scoreless Streak Extends to 4… In the second half of the past 4 games, the 49ers haven't allowed a point. None. Zip. Zilch. Nada. The Rams, Chargers, Cardinals, and now Saints have all failed to crack the scoreboard once after halftime. While only this last contest has been a pure shutout, that mark remains


Featured

Trending News

Share 49ersWebzone