Cornerback Jimmie Ward
Third-year defensive back Jimmie Ward wasn’t tested much against Houston, but San Francisco’s contest against the Broncos figures to be much different.
Ward was burned by Denver wideout Emmanuel Sanders in Wednesday’s joint practices, although the Niners cornerback bounced back nicely with a strip of fellow Broncos receiver Demaryius Thomas in a 7-on-7 drill, per Matt Maiocco of CSN Bay Area.
Both Thomas and Sanders make up part of a solid receiving corps Denver will feature Saturday night.
The only question mark will be how the Broncos’ quarterback situation, one not unlike the Niners’ own, will impact Denver’s passing attack.
Regardless, Ward — who is presumed to be a starter on the outside this season — should get tested a bit more during this game than he was a week ago.
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How Ward handles the added pressure should make a pretty good statement regarding how well he’ll answer to his ascendance up the 49ers depth chart.
He, and fellow corner Tramaine Brock, should see plenty of action at Sports Authority Field, so keep an eye on how each performs against the Broncos’ top-two receivers.