SANTA CLARA — Ahkello Witherspoon has a bull’s-eye on his back.
Opposing teams, local media and even retired 49ers players have targeted Witherspoon, San Francisco’s second-year cornerback, as the weak link, the mark, the problem for the defense.
Robert Saleh, the 49ers defensive coordinator, addressed the critics and defended Witherspoon Wednesday in the team’s auditorium. “Ahkello is getting better,” Saleh insisted. “The thing that gets frustrating sometimes is when you’re losing football games, it’s very hard for people to see what’s right. They all want to point out what’s wrong. They’re trying to figure out why we’re losing. So, we get lost in the world of what’s wrong rather than trying to find out what’s right.”
Former 49ers strong safety Donte Whitner lives in the world of what’s wrong with Witherspoon.
Whitner played strong safety for the 49ers from 2011 to 2013, and made the Pro Bowl in 2012 and 2014. He retired from the NFL in 2017 and currently works as an analyst for NBC Sports Bay Area.
On Sunday, Whitner posted video clips on Instagram of Witherspoon’s season –—both the good and the bad. Mostly the bad.
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