5 pending free agents 49ers shouldn’t re-sign next season
By Peter Panacy
No. 2: 49ers Cornerback Josh Norman
Look, it makes sense why San Francisco elected to sign veteran cornerback Josh Norman during the very beginning of the 2021 regular season. The position was already questionable enough despite the 49ers using two draft picks on rookie corners, Ambry Thomas and Deommodore Lenoir, and subsequent injuries to Jason Verrett and Emmanuel Moseley made it a necessity anyway.
But Norman, despite his league-leading six forced fumbles through 15 weeks, is nevertheless a liability when he’s beat in coverage, often resorting to grabbiness, holding and defensive pass interference.
Read More: 5 cornerbacks 49ers must target in 2022 NFL Draft
Having just turned 34 years old, it’s not like those elements of Norman’s game will improve next season.
The Niners have to heavily invest in younger, more athletic cornerbacks during the offseason, which should ultimately make Norman a one-year stopgap option and nothing more.
Norman filled a need at the time, but that need shouldn’t be something San Francisco relies upon again in 2022.