A statistical comparison of the 49ers’ top cornerbacks

This offseason, four 49er cornerbacks will compete for three primary cornerback jobs – left cornerback, right cornerback and slot cornerback. The competing cornerbacks are Carlos Rogers, Tarell Brown, Chris Culliver and Nnamdi Asomugha. Which cornerback do you think will win each job, and who do you think will be the odd man out? To educate our guesses, here are some stats, courtesy of Pro Football Focus.   Carlos Rogers Slot…

May 26, 2013

49ers sign Nnamdi Asomugha to one-year deal

The 49ers just signed cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha to a one-year deal worth up to $3 million, but none of that money is guaranteed according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Asomugha will be 32-years-old next season. He’s four days younger than the 49ers’ oldest cornerback, Carlos Rogers. Do you like this signing? Do you think Asomugha will be one of the 49ers’ three best cornerbacks when the regular season begins? Do you think he’ll…

April 2, 2013

Grant’s four-round 49ers mock draft

This is my second attempt to mock the 49ers’ draft. My first attempt was on the money, but this second attempt is even more on the money. Note: I mock the first four rounds only. The 49ers will trade up and draft CB Xavier Rhodes with the 11th pick. They will trade the Chargers picks No. 31, 34 and 94 for picks No. 11 and 145. Rhodes will start at…

March 29, 2013

How the Vikings used Percy Harvin against the 49ers

The 49ers will face Percy Harvin at least two times next season. Can they match up with him? They couldn’t last season when he was on the Vikings. Harvin caught nine passes for 89 yards and he ran once for nine yards. A couple of his catches were screens and a couple were swing passes out of the backfield. I want to show you three plays in which Harvin beat…

March 22, 2013

Cosell breaks down Boldin, Reed and the 49ers’ secondary

Greg Cosell spoke on KNBR Tuesday morning. Here’s what he said about the 49ers. Q: What are the 49ers getting in Anquan Boldin? COSELL: Boldin doesn’t win against man coverage very well. He’s a contested-catch receiver. He’s got really good hands, vice grip hands. He’s better in the slot than he is on the outside. You can throw the ball to him when he’s covered and he’ll make catches. He’s…

March 12, 2013

What the 49ers really need

Matt Barrows wrote a blog this morning arguing why the 49ers’ biggest offseason issue is the pass rush, not the secondary. I love Matt’s work and I usually agree with his opinions, but I disagree this time. The 49ers need to address the secondary with greater urgency than the D-line. If Isaac Sopoaga and Ricky Jean Francois leave in free agency, then the 49ers need to address the D-line after…

March 6, 2013

Grant’s post-Combine 49ers mock offseason

Now that the NFL Scouting Combine is over, let’s try to predict what the 49ers will do this offseason. Here’s my best guess. I’m eager to read yours. FREE AGENCY OUT: Dashon Goldson, Isaac Sopoaga, Ricky Jean Francois, Larry Grant, Leonard Davis, Tramaine Brock, Clark Haggans and Ted Ginn Jr. Goldson wants too much money, and the 49ers want a free safety with cornerback skills. Jean Francois signs with the…

March 1, 2013

Top 5 questions 49ers must answer this offseason

What are the top-five questions the 49ers must answer this offseason? I’ll give you my list, and I’d be interested to read yours as well. Can the 49ers’ defense improve? Once Justin Smith got hurt in the third quarter of the Week 15 game against the Patriots, the 49ers’ defense imploded. They went from elite to awful, giving up 34.4 points per game in five of their last six games…

February 11, 2013

49ers Super Bowl XLVII grades: Defense and special teams

The 49ers lost the Super Bowl 34-31 on Sunday. Here are the grades for the defense and special teams. Defensive line: C. Ray McDonald got pressure and recorded a sack, but the other defensive linemen were invisible. It was hard to tell Justin Smith was even on the field most of the time. He had almost no impact on the game, finishing with just three tackles. Linebackers: C. Credit the…

February 4, 2013

49ers NFC Championship grades: Defense and special teams

ATLANTA – The 49ers beat the Falcons 28-24. The 49ers are going to the Super Bowl. Here are the grades for the 49ers’ defense and special teams. Defensive line: B. Justin Smith and Ray McDonald didn’t get much pressure on Ryan, but in the second half they were able to push the pocket up the middle. It became difficult for Ryan to step into his throws. Also, the 49ers’ defensive…

January 20, 2013

Cosell: “Crabtree has become a big-time NFL receiver.”

Greg Cosell spoke on KNBR Thursday morning. Here’s what he said about the 49ers and the Falcons. Q: Was Kaepernick’s record-breaking performance aided by an awful Packers defense? COSELL: I think that’s fair. I think the numbers reflect that. He had three scrambled in the first half for 53 yards. All of them came against man-to-man coverage concepts. Two of those plays they doubled Michael Crabtree. I think that playing…

January 17, 2013

Harbaugh on the Falcons: “They’re solid in every regard.”

SANTA CLARA – This is the transcript of Jim Harbaugh’s Monday press conference, courtesy of the 49ers.   How did DT Justin Smith make it through the game? “Good. Played well. Came out of the game as clean as possible.”   And did you expect him to kind of pick up where he left off? “It looked good in practice and the feedback that we were getting from him was…

January 14, 2013

49ers divisional playoff grades: Defense and special teams

SAN FRANCISCO – The 49ers massacred the Packers 45-31 on Saturday night. Here is the grade for the 49ers defense and special teams. Defensive line: B+. Justin Smith played 53 snaps, 91 percent of the defensive snaps. That alone is impressive. He couldn’t use his injured left arm, but the Packers still double teamed him, and he was disruptive bull rushing. And he was effective against the run, finishing the…

January 13, 2013

What we learned about the 49ers: The good and the not-so-good

SAN FRANCISCO – We learned a few things about the 49ers today – some good and some not-so-good. Here are those things. The Good The 49ers earned the No.2 seed and a first-round Bye with the win and the Packers’ three-point loss to the Vikings. The Packers and Vikings play again next weekend. If the Packers win, they play the 49ers at Candlestick in two weeks, on Saturday, January 12th…

December 30, 2012

49ers Week 17 grades: Defense and special teams

SAN FRANCISCO – The 49ers stomped the Cardinals 27-13. Here are the grades for the 49ers defense and special teams. Defensive line: B. Ricky Jean Francois had a team-high six tackles (one for a loss), a sack and a QB hit. He played well. Ray McDonald didn’t get any sacks or tackles for loss, but he forced a fumble in the second half which Donte Whitner recovered. Linebackers: B. Patrick…

December 30, 2012

Should the 49ers bench Carlos Rogers?

Carlos Rogers is having a bad season. He used to be a premier slot corner in the NFL, but he’s 31 years old, he’s lost a step and he can’t keep up with the quick slot receivers anymore. The 49ers signed Rogers to a four-year, $29.3 million contact in the offseason. On Sunday night, Rogers dropped an easy interception and gave up a touchdown to Doug Baldwin. Rogers has not…

December 25, 2012

49ers Week 15 grades: Defense and special teams

FOXBORO, Ma. – The 49ers beat the Patriots 41-34 and clinched a playoff berth. Here are the grades for the 49ers’ defense and special teams. Defensive line: B. Justin Smith did not play particularly well, and then he left the game with an elbow injury. On the other hand, Ray McDonald played his best game of the season. He had half a sack all season, and he had two Sunday…

December 16, 2012

Tarell Brown: “Stop Tom Brady and stop Wes Welker and the guys that make plays after the catch.”

SANTA CLARA — Tarell Brown spoke at his locker Tuesday afternoon. Here’s what he said about the Patriots’ offense. Q: What is going to be key for your defense against the Patriots? BROWN: We all have to go out there and win out one-on-one battles. They have a lot of different weapons, a lot of guys that can make plays, but we’re really fighting against Tom Brady. He has the…

December 11, 2012

Fangio to Goldson: “If the quarterback starts to slide, you’ve got to get off of him.”

SANTA CLARA — Vic Fangio spoke in the 49ers media tent Thursday afternoon. Here is what he said, courtesy of the 49ers.   What kind of problems do the Dolphins present? “Well, they’ve got a talented young quarterback who’s a good athlete, runs well. He’s a scrambler, got a strong arm. I think he’s gaining more and more confidence with every game that he’s played. I think they’re a much…

December 6, 2012

49ers Week 13 grades: Defense and special teams

SAN FRANCISCO – The 49ers lost to the Rams 16-13. Here are the grades for the 49ers defense. Defensive line: A. Justin Smith may have had the best game of his season. He had a team-high 8 tackles, including three for losses, 1 sack and 1 QB hit. Isaac Sopoaga and Ray McDonald helped limit Steven Jackson to 48 yards on 21 carries. Linebackers: A-. Aldon Smith had a sack…

December 2, 2012