NFL Analyst Says 49ers Should Pursue Ex-$43.5 Million Pro Bowler

Robert Woods

Getty Former Rams receiver Robert Woods gets wrapped up during a October 17, 2021 game.

Alongside the NFL Draft, the San Francisco 49ers added four new pieces to the cornerback room this offseason. The team also resigned two veterans with the franchise last season.

Including the 2021 draftees, here’s the complete list of the 49ers’ cornerback unit for the upcoming season:

However, is there room for one more corner? Let alone, a 2020 Pro Bowler who became officially available during the week of May 9? One Bleacher Report analyst believes so.

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Who the Analyst Believes the 49ers Should Pursue

Joe Tansey of B/R wrote down a list of names the 49ers should pursue after the 2022 on Wednesday, May 11 in his latest column.

And one of the most telling names on his list: The former $43.5 million cornerback for the New York Giants James Bradberry, who was originally the subject of trade rumors before and during the NFL Draft but was released in a salary cap move.

Not only was Bradberry once signed to a blockbuster three year deal with the G-Men, but once had an average salary of $14.5 million per Spotrac. Tansey is a believer that Bradberry is worth pursuing if you’re the 49ers.

“Bradberry is one season removed from a Pro Bowl appearance and has been durable throughout his career,” Tansey wrote. “The 29-year-old could be a nice addition to the revamped San Francisco secondary. San Francisco landed Charvarius Ward in free agency to be the team’s top corner. A potential addition of Bradberry would give the 49ers two solid veterans on the outside of the secondary.”

Is There Room for Bradberry?

There’s no disputing that Bradberry is a stout coverage defender when on the field.

Per Pro Football Focus, Bradberry surrendered 60 catches on 92 targets for 729 yards in 689 coverage snaps. He didn’t allow a single 100-yard outing up his side for the Giants. He also snatched a career-best four interceptions last season. Furthermore, Bradberry has proven his consistency in breaking up passes thrown his direction — producing 82 total per Pro Football Reference which gives him an average of 13.6 per season.

However, the downside to his play is this: He surrendered eight touchdowns his side last season. Among those games: Versus a Miami Dolphins offense that ranked 22nd overall last season, but a game that saw Bradberry allow two touchdowns his side.

While it’s understandable that the 49ers may get enticed by adding some veteran help in a relatively young secondary, the 49ers do have vets already in place. Names like Johnson, Verrett, the newly acquired Ward and in the safety room, veteran captain Jimmie Ward all provide a bevy of experience.

The next major question is this: How much would Bradberry be willing to accept and how much can the 49ers give him should they pivot toward him? The 49ers still have a training camp decision to make with Jimmy Garappolo and his base salary of $24.2 million plus have the Deebo Samuel contract situation still on going.

Tansey, though, believes that based on the 49ers’ competition in the division, Bradberry’s presence is a need.

“The 49ers would face a ton of competition for Bradberry’s signature, but he is worth pursuing because of how often the secondary could be needed in crucial NFC West games,” Tansey wrote.

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