Future Hall of Fame cornerback Richard Sherman is entrenched as one of the starters in San Francisco. Across from him, well, no one knows who the starter will be.
On Thursday, defensive coordinator Robert Saleh told reporters that the identity of the other starter has not yet been determined.
“Kyle [Shanahan], obviously, he’s heavily involved,” Saleh said regarding the selection process. “We’re evaluating it every day and when Coach Shanahan is ready to pull the trigger, he’ll pull the trigger. As of now, it’s still a work in progress.”
The options for the job include Emmanuel Moseley (pictured), Ahkello Witherspoon, and Jason Verrett. Whoever ends up joining Sherman in the starting lineup, they’ll have their hands full in nine days, when the 49ers (and the rest of us) get their first look at DeAndre Hopkins in a Cardinals uniform.
“He’s an alpha dog,” Saleh said of Hopkins. “Phenomenal wide receiver. Very, very physical. It’s fun, you get the most physical receiver in the game in Week One, and it’s going to be a tremendous challenge. I’m sure that they’re excited and they’ve got a million ways that they can already use him. We’ve just got to play our game and do the best we can.”
For the 49ers, far more important than pass coverage is pass rush. If the 49ers can put enough heat on Kyler Murray, he won’t have time to get the ball to Hopkins or any of the other receivers on the roster.