No. 3: Defensive Back Adrian Colbert
San Francisco 49ers
During training camp, defensive back Lorenzo Jerome certainly had the edge over seventh-round NFL Draft rookie Adrian Colbert.
And Jerome was an undrafted free agent.
Turns out, both make the 53-man roster. Jerome seemed to be a lock, especially after seeing plenty of time with the first-team defense. Colbert, though, wasn’t quite in the same category.
Colbert ended up seeing 60 snaps on defense during the Niners’ preseason finale against the Chargers — most among all San Francisco defenders. In addition, Colbert saw 12 snaps on special teams, increasing his value.
As it all turned out, the last pick from the 49ers’ 2017 NFL Draft class held up his end of the bargain to ensure each selection made San Francisco’s 53-man roster.
Colbert could have lost out on a spot to veteran defensive back Don Jones, who has vastly more experience and can also double on special teams. But Jones’ torn ACL ended that theory.
San Francisco has some depth questions at both cornerback and safety. Colbert can play both, so that’s likely a reason he beat out other defenders, like Vinnie Sunseri and Asa Jackson.