clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

49ers bubble watch: Cornerbacks are Rashard Robinson, and a bunch of questions

The San Francisco 49ers have questions at almost every position while they work to figure out their 53-man roster. We’ll break down the bubble watch for each one. Today, we look at the cornerbacks.

The San Francisco 49ers wrapped up minicamp last week, and return for training camp in just over five weeks. The roster appears to be just about set, so with that in mind, it is time to re-visit the bubble watch. The offseason workout program does not lock in most roster spots, and that is even more the case this season with a new coaching staff and front office.

Over the next two weeks, we’re going to take a look at each position, and what the bubble watch looks like. As we’ve done for many years now, the bubble watch breaks down to lock, strong bubble, weak bubble, and longshot. For some positions, we'll have multiple players listed at strong bubble, even though not all are likely to make the roster. But the idea is that they both stand a good shot, even if it is just one of them. Additionally, this does not reflect whether or not a player will be traded. Trades can and probably will happen during training camp, but the positioning on this focuses on whether or not they’d be cut.

We move on to the cornerback position.

Lock: Rashard Robinson, Ahkello Witherspoon
Strong Bubble: Dontae Johnson, Keith Reaser, K’Waun Williams
Weak Bubble: Will Redmond, Will Davis, Adrian Colbert
Longshot: Prince Charles Iworah, Zach Franklin

The 49ers are changing over the entire cornerback depth chart this offseason. Jimmie Ward and Tramaine Brock were the starters, while Rashard Robinson and Keith Reaser had the bulk of the remaining cornerback snaps. Robinson now moves into the starting lineup, while Reaser is competing with Dontae Johnson and Ahkello Witherspoon for a starting role.

Reaser and Johnson have the experience edge over Witherspoon, but the rookie has the build that the 49ers are looking for as their defense transitions to a new look. I would not be surprised if both Reaser and Johnson make the roster, but neither is a completely sure thing. Will Davis is a tough call in some ways, but given his experience, he’s at least got a decent chance of making the roster.

K’Waun Williams and Will Redmond are competing for the nickel role, and for the time being, Williams would seem to have the edge. My guess is only one of these two makes the roster. His draft status as a third round pick doesn’t hold any cache with Kyle Shanahan and Robert Saleh, but he was a talented cornerback prior to his ACL injury. He’s got his work cut out for him in August.