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49ers considering moving Jimmie Ward to safety

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The San Francisco 49ers are considering moving Jimmie Ward to safety after spending most of his first three seasons in the NFL as a cornerback.

New 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said on Wednesday that they are considering moving Ward back to the position he played as a rookie with San Francisco in 2015.

“I’m not sure yet,” Shanahan said, via Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee. “But that’s definitely the subject of discussion. Because I know he’s capable of doing both.”

The 49ers intend on adopting the same Cover 3 defense employed by the Atlanta Falcons and Seattle Seahawks. Putting Ward at free safety could fill a crucial role in that scheme. To truly work at a high level, the defense requires a rangy free safety that can handle center field duties and alleviate the burden on the cornerbacks on the outside.

Ward did serve as a backup at safety at times but has primary played in the slot and as an outside cornerback in his three years with the 49ers. He’s appeared in 35 games over that span with 18 starts.

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8 Responses to “49ers considering moving Jimmie Ward to safety”
  1. bondsncruz says: Mar 2, 2017 1:19 AM

    It’s actually a great idea. No chance Reid, Bethea, or Tartt would do well in that role.

  2. seanpscott says: Mar 2, 2017 1:55 AM

    Guess it all depends how it goes in free agency and the draft. If we draft a safety like Hooker then he won’t have to. But if we sign someone like Bouye we can move him to Free Safety which is where I think he’s meant to be. Then go D with the #2 pick like Reuben Foster or edge rusher unless we can trade back. Lot of variables, will be interesting to see how it plays out

  3. gbpackfan3 says: Mar 2, 2017 2:32 AM

    I wonder if this means they’re looking at releasing Bethea…I mean they don’t NEED the cap space but for a team that’s in ultra-rebuild mode it would make the most sense to get as young as they can now

  4. walruspete says: Mar 2, 2017 4:16 AM

    Trade Eric Reid then?

  5. trubroncfan07 says: Mar 2, 2017 6:03 AM

    Duh you mean the position he played in college.

  6. ruben6547 says: Mar 2, 2017 8:10 AM

    Good
    I always thought it should be
    Ward st free safety
    Reid at string safety”

  7. pau49ers says: Mar 2, 2017 9:56 AM

    I hope the 49ers can finally find a position for this guy to play. Corner, nickel, safety, let him settle in somewhere so we can see if he was worth a first-round pick.

  8. pau49ers says: Mar 2, 2017 10:49 AM

    walruspete says:
    Mar 2, 2017 4:16 AM
    Trade Eric Reid then?
    ———————————————-
    Under no circumstance does he get traded. He’s 25, was a pro-bowler a couple years ago and we spent a first round pick on him. He’ll move to strong safety and he’ll be a star in the new defensive scheme.

    You build that defense around Bowman, Reid, Armstead, Buckner and Ward.

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