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Robert Saleh: Ahkello Witherspoon progressing, will be on field ‘sooner than later.’

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Will we see the rookie playing this season?

NFL: Denver Broncos at San Francisco 49ers Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

The San Francisco 49ers have gotten extensive work from a lot of their draft picks, but one player who has yet to see the playing field is cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon. He struggled in the preseason, and has been inactive each of the first four weeks.

On Thursday, Matt Barrows asked defensive coordinator Robert Saleh about Witherspoon, and what the plan is moving forward. He is pleased with the progress Witherspoon has shown, and thinks he is taking full advantage of scout team work.

“[H]e’s been working his tail off. His technique’s been improving every single week. And the way he’s been operating, and the way he’s been going since OTAs, and progressing, there’s no doubt he’s going to end up on the field sooner than later. There’s no doubt.”

Rashard Robinson and Dontae Johnson remain entrenched as the 49ers starting cornerbacks, even as Robinson has struggled with any kind of consistency. He’ll make some nice plays, but there are too many bone-headed mistakes or poor technique way too frequently. But for the time being, nothing is changing.

If Robinson continues playing like we’ve seen for a good chunk of these first four games, I’m curious if we see some adjustments made in the secondary. Additionally, Asa Jackson is currently serving as the primary backup. Witherspoon will have to take further steps in practice to earn a spot ahead of Jackson, who also can potentially play some safety in a pinch.