The San Francisco 49ers cornerbacks have been inconsistent for stretches this season, and one has to wonder if the team will bring in some competition soon. An intriguing option will hit the market today, as the Miami Dolphins released Byron Maxwell, according to various national media folks.
The Dolphins acquired Maxwell from the Philadelphia Eagles in a deal that saw Maxwell, Kiko Alonso and a first round pick go to Miami in exchange for the Dolphins first round pick. It was primarily a salary dump, as Maxwell had struggled after signing a six-year, $63 million deal in Philadelphia.
Where it gets interesting is his experience in Seattle. Maxwell had a solid career in Seattle, and then cashed in big with Philadelphia. Given his success in the Seahawks defense, he could potentially be a guy the 49ers call for some competition. My guess is he will look for a team competing for a playoff spot, but the 49ers do have cap space to offer him some decent money.
The 49ers cornerback depth chart is topped by Rashard Robinson and Dontae Johnson, but rookie Ahkello Witherspoon is getting a sizable increase in his workload. On the one hand, Maxwell likely has a good idea of what Robert Saleh is trying to run. On the other hand, the 49ers are getting younger and looking to the future.
Robinson and Johnson are inconsistent, but the 49ers are getting a firm handle on where they stand. Maxwell is not a No. 1 cornerback, and I’d rather wait until the offseason to add a true No. 1 either through free agency or the draft. I’m fine slogging through this season giving Robinson, Johnson, and Witherspoon all sorts of work.
It is worth noting nickel back K’Waun Williams is likely to miss Sunday’s game, but Maxwell is more of an outside corner than slot guy.