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Report: CB Jaylen Watkins signs with Chargers a week after 49ers visit

The 49ers have been kicking the tires on free agent cornerbacks, to no avail.

Former Eagles defensive back Jaylen Watkins is signing a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Chargers, according to NFL Network reporter Mike Garafolo. This comes nine days after the San Francisco 49ers brought him in for a visit.

The 49ers need to improve their depth at cornerback, and it looks more and more likely that this will come through the 2018 NFL Draft. Along with Watkins, the 49ers brought in LaDarius Gunter, who re-signed with the Carolina Panthers. The 49ers were expected to bring in Delvin Breaux for a visit, but there has been no word since.

There are still plenty of free agents who could provide solid competition and depth. However, any such signings likely won’t happen until OTAs get going in May, or possible even not until the start of training camp in late July.

In the meantime, the 49ers seem a strong bet to draft at least one defensive back, if not a second. A Denzel Ward or Joshua Jackson (or others) could provide a long-term cornerback option. A Minkah Fitzpatrick or Derwin James (or others) could provide some long-term versatility between safety and cornerback.

The cornerback class is fairly deep this year, so a day two or three pick could be where the 49ers find someone to eventually replace Richard Sherman. In the meantime, they continue kicking the tires on veterans.