Niners Appear Thin at Cornerback With Departure of Culliver, Cox

GM Trent Baalke says he's not worried, however, and is confident the team will be fine at the position

Cornerback Chris Culliver has now signed a free-agent deal with Washington, according to several media reports Friday morning.

Perrish Cox – who was the other 49ers starting cornerback for much of the 2014 season – also is a free agent and has interest from Washington, Cleveland and Tennessee.

So where does that leave the 49ers at cornerback?

At this point, Tramaine Brock, who began last season as a starter after a terrific 2013, would be one starter. Brock suffered an injury early in the season and was sidelined much of the year. Several players on the roster would contend for the other spot, including Dontae Johnson – who had a strong rookie season – Kenneth Acker, Keith Reaser, Leon McFadden and Marcus Cromartie.

Jimmie Ward, the 49ers’ top draft pick in 2014 (but who missed much of the season to a broken foot),  is the likely nickel corner.

As Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle noted, that leaves the 49ers with a very inexperienced corps of cornerbacks.

But Branch says general manager Trent Baalke doesn’t seem concerned and says he feels “real good about” the situation.

“We’re working on a couple other things still and then you’ve got a draft,” Baalked told Branch. “I can see the thought process that you may have, but internally (we) feel good about the group and where it can go.”

The crop of corners available in the draft isn’t considered deep, but the 49ers may have some players they like. There are 10 cornerbacks currently ranked as first- or second-round talents, with Trae Waynes of Michigan State, Kevin Johnson of Wake Forest, Marcus Peters of Washington, Quinten Rollins of Miami (Ohio) and P.J. Williams of Florida State rated as the top five.

Also, there remain some solid players still out there in free agency, such as the Packers' Tramon Williams and the Saints’ Patrick Robinson.

But for now, the 49ers’ collection of cornerbacks seems very thin.

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