No. 6: SF 49ers Safety
Jimmie Ward, Jaquiski Tartt, Tarvarius Moore and Marcell Harris
Like wide receiver, the Niners’ crop of safeties for the regular season went pretty much as expected. The only real question mark was whether or not veteran safety Johnathan Cyprien could beat out third-year pro Marcell Harris for the backup spot behind the starter, Jaquiski Tartt.
Harris won this role, and Cyprien elected to sign on with San Francisco’s practice squad, guarding against injury concerns surrounding Tartt.
Those concerns merit some attention. After all, Tartt has missed 19 regular-season games the past three years, while free safety Jimmie Ward has landed on season-ending injured reserve in four of his first six seasons at the pro level.
When healthy, the tandem of Ward and Tartt is exceptionally important to coordinator Robert Saleh’s defense.
That defense ranked No. 1 against the pass last year, putting the last line of the team’s defense squarely at No. 6 on this list.