Is Nnamdi Asomugha a Fit with the 49ers?
The San Francisco 49ers made a frugal move in signing former All Pro cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha to a one-year, $1.35 million deal with added incentives. And the incentives are the reason for the acquisition.
To be blunt, Asomugha has been terrible in the past two seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles. In fact, opposing quarterbacks have accrued a staggering 120.6 passer rating against him, according to Pro Football Focus. In lieu of his gaudy performance, the 49ers have piled on the incentives for Asomugha, which add up to an additional $1.7 million.
“I think what you’re dealing with is a 49ers team that would like to get better at the cornerback position and they brought in another body,” NFL Films analyst Greg Cosell said.
The 49ers are requiring Asomugha to first make the team, which means he has to be considered one of the top three cornerbacks on the team. He will compete with Carlos Rogers, Tarell Brosn and Chris Culliver. If he doesn’t beat out one of these cornerbacks, San Francisco will likely cut him and bring on a young fourth-string cornerback who could also play special teams.
The likely scenario is that Asomugha doesn’t make the team and the 49ers are not out any money. If he does, then he’ll likely take the spot of Carlos Rogers, San Francisco’s weakest link in the secondary. He will move to his natural position on the right side where he is better at jamming oppsing wide receivers off their route and using the sideline as a second defender. But he couldn’t be used anywhere else, considering his poor tackling ability and decreased speed.
It’s hard to say if this move will really improve the 49ers’ secondary — which was the weakest part of the team’s masterful run to the Super Bowl. In all likelihood, Asomugha will only add incremental value to San Francisco’s depth if he even makes the team.