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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Charvarius Ward boldly declares 49ers’ place among NFL elite, eyes big contract

May 20, 2024 at 1:17 PM

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Charvarius Ward is brimming with confidence in himself and his team, the San Francisco 49ers. Fresh off a Super Bowl appearance, the cornerback, affectionately known as "Mooney," believes his squad will again be among the NFL's top teams.

The 49ers entered the playoffs last season as NFC West champions and the No. 1 seed in the conference. While many believe the division has improved this offseason and that the gap between the Los Angeles Rams and the 49ers may have closed, Ward remains certain his Niners are still the team to beat.

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"I think we're the best team in NFL outside of the Super Bowl champions," Ward declared Monday on the "Up and Adams" show. "I don't think nobody really messing with us right now. I feel like we clearly got the most talented team in the league."

In February, that talent wasn't enough to overcome his former team, the Kansas City Chiefs. They defeated the 49ers in overtime during Super Bowl LVIII.

"It's just when you go up against the Michael Jordan of the NFL, which is [QB] Patrick Mahomes, that's a tough matchup," Ward shared. "But I don't think anybody really can beat us outside of Patrick Mahomes bringing his A-game like he did in the Super Bowl."

The 49ers will have another shot at the Chiefs at Levi's Stadium on October 20. While a San Francisco win won't erase February's gut-wrenching defeat, proving the 49ers can overcome such an opponent would go a long way. Including two Super Bowl matchups, the Niners have not beaten the Chiefs since the 2014 season.

"We gotta beat them, boys," Ward said. "They've been tearing our [explative] up for a while. We gotta beat them. They're the champs. I feel like that's the only team that's been giving us problems. So, [explative], we gotta go out there and try to beat them boys."

Shanahan's Super Bowl overtime decision

Host Kay Adams asked Ward about head coach Kyle Shanahan's decision to receive the football to open overtime in the Super Bowl, which drew significant criticism following the defeat.

Ward defended his coach's in-game call.

"You got to think about it, though, Miss Kay," Ward said. "At the end of the fourth quarter, the defense was on the field for a very long time. So, if we would have went right back out there, it probably could have been the same result. I mean, hindsight is always 20/20."

That prompted Adams to ask if Ward believed he was too tired to head back onto the field at the start of overtime.

Ward responded, "I mean, I would have been ready if we would have had to go out there, [for sure], but we lost, they won. It's alright."

Eyeing the next big contract

Next offseason's most significant 49ers-related contract discussions will revolve around quarterback Brock Purdy. However, Ward is entering the final year of the hefty three-year deal he signed with the 49ers in 2022. He hopes to secure another significant contract next offseason. The corner is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent unless San Francisco signs him to an extension before then.

"The [contract] I'm currently on right now, that's been my biggest deal so far—three-year, 40-something million," Ward shared. "But I just got to go out there, have my best year, be better than last year. I'll let that go take care of itself. Yeah, hopefully, I get that bag next year. We'll see."

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