SF 49ers: 4 positions needing most attention in 2021
By Peter Panacy
SF 49ers Position Need No. 2: Cornerback
Pending Free Agents: Richard Sherman, K’Waun Williams, Jamar Taylor, Jason Verrett, Ahkello Witherspoon, Dontae Johnson, Emmanuel Moseley (RFA), Ken Webster (ERFA)
Perhaps no other position will undergo more changes this offseason than the SF 49ers cornerback room. All three starters — Richard Sherman, Jason Verrett and K’Waun Williams — are unrestricted free agents, while another starting option, Emmanuel Moseley, isn’t a guarantee to return on a restricted free-agent deal.
Sherman has already hinted he won’t return because the numbers simply won’t work, while Verrett said he hasn’t had any discussions about a new deal with the Niners.
Williams, one of the NFL’s best nickel cornerbacks, is also a re-sign priority. If there’s good news there, nickel backs rarely earn anything close to what boundary corners receive on the open market.
Depth corners like Ahkello Witherspoon and Dontae Johnson are almost assuredly gone after this season, putting both depth and starting-caliber options atop what San Francisco needs to address at the position.
It wouldn’t be a surprise to see the SF 49ers land at least one veteran corner this offseason, given the tendency for young defensive backs to struggle out of college at the pro level, while using at least another NFL Draft pick to find someone capable of starting, too.
Either way, one could make the argument the most attention needs to be given to this position during the offseason, and it would be hard to rebut.