The San Francisco 49ers have been rolling with Richard Sherman and Ahkello Witherspoon at their two outside cornerback positions this season, leaving many of us wondering when rookie Tarvarius Moore might get an opportunity. We’ve heard repeatedly that he is close, and on his bi-weekly Thursday KNBR interview, general manager John Lynch said the same thing, stating, “He’s close to getting out there at corner, and we think’s gonna be a really good corner.”
Moore played seven snaps on defense this past week, but even though he has yet to get a significant opportunity in the secondary, he has remained productive on special teams. Moore played 20 snaps on special teams, and was the team’s special teams player of the week, according to John Lynch.
The rookie finished the game with three special teams tackles, and PFF graded him as the team’s second best special teams player. Linebacker James Onwualu had the top grade. Moore serves as a gunner on punt returns, but is actively involved in most special teams units. He is currently second in special teams snaps, and will pass Mark Nzeocha for the lead this weekend if Nzeocha is inactive due to his groin injury.
Ideally Moore gets on the field in more extensive cornerback work these final three games, but at the very least he has become a strong special teams contributor. With D.J. Reed shining at nickel back, Moore is likely no more than a dime guy for the time being. It might take an injury to Richard Sherman or Ahkello Witherspoon to get him a bigger role.
Although, I wonder if Richard Sherman would be comfortable taking a seat against the Bears and/or Rams to get Moore some additional work? I’m fine with Sherman playing out the season, but I wonder if that’s a discussion that has been broached at all? We saw the discussion happen with Earl Mitchell to get D.J. Jones more work, but what about Sherman?