The 49ers are ultimately going to be forced to part ways with some good talent ahead of Week 1, as these three positions are overloaded with talent.
One of the byproducts of being a good team is that a roster typically has both high-caliber starters and an array of starting-caliber depth to both support rotations and guard against injury.
And in many cases, as teams look to whittle down their 90-man offseason rosters to the 53 players who’ll comprise the regular-season group, the inevitable tough choices of cutting players who could play pivotal roles is something always on the table.
It’s not the case for the San Francisco 49ers at every single position heading towards training camp, but there are plenty of positional groups that are awfully deep.
These logjams are the product of drafting, developing or signing good talent, particularly if there’s an emphasis on one position over another. Good players can be pushed down the depth chart and potentially off of it altogether by better players.
Such is the nature of competition.
At any rate, here are three Niners positions that have such logjams heading into 2022 training camp.
49ers position No. 3: Cornerback
Players on roster: Tariq Castro-Fields*, Darqueze Dennard, Ka’dar Hollman, Dontae Johnson, Qwuantrezz Knight*, Deommodore Lenoir, Emmanuel Moseley, Ambry Thomas, Jason Verrett, Charvarius Ward, Samuel Womack*
* denotes rookie
It’s weird to think cornerback is now a strength for San Francisco after being such a weakness last year, but that’s what happens when general manager John Lynch threw so many resources at the need this offseason.
Highlighting all moves, of course, was signing free-agent corner Charvarius Ward away from the Kansas City Chiefs, but Lynch didn’t stop there.
Re-signing Jason Verrett, who missed the rest of 2021 after tearing his ACL in Week 1, could provide the 49ers with yet another starting-caliber option if he’s fully recovered and stays healthy, meaning Emmanuel Moseley is pushed down into a backup role on the boundary, potentially.
Moseley will jockey for depth-chart positioning with second-year pro Ambry Thomas, who flashed enough promise late his rookie season a year ago to likely avoid being waived, but fellow 2021 rookie Deommodore Lenoir might not be so lucky.
The Niners, too, have a nifty battle going on at nickel cornerback where veteran Darqueze Dennard might have to fight off the rookie, Samuel Womack, for the right to start.
Assuming San Francisco keeps six cornerbacks on its 53-man roster, there’ll be some notable names let go.