Cota Expected To Sign?
August 13 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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Safety Chad Cota has a good workout with the 49ers on Tuesday and is schedule for a workout today. The veteran safety is being looked at by the 49ers in lieu of the recent injuries to the depth at their safety position. A once over crowded position, the 49ers are now scrambling to find enough bodies to fill the top four spots.
While the team has not declared that it definitely would sign a safety, let a lone Cota, the release of receiver Mike Jennings, fullback Matt Stanley and receiver Donnie OíNeal on Tuesday was a fairly good indicator that the team is looking to add a player to their roster.
The problem with signing a player like Cota is not that he is running out of time to learn the system. He wouldnít be starting and thus this isnít the biggest concern, and there is still ample time to get a good handle on the defense. Rather, the real question is what happens once the rest of the safeties get healthy.
The extent of Kevin Curtisí injury wonít be known until later today when the doctors that operated on Curtis report their findings back to the team. At best, Curtis will likely miss six week, but a ten week recovery is not out of the question. Then of there is Al Blades who spent all of last year on the practice squad. Heís looked good in two strait off-seasonís but his recent injury may once again make him a practice squad candidate. Then there is John Keith who is currently on the mend. The 49ers canít have confidence that heíll be healthy enough for the season. And so the conflict of interest exists.
On the one hand, the team needs depth at safety, on the other, when healthy, the spot is over crowded. I see Cota as a player that would be an upgrade of Blades for sure, and he would certainly rival a healthy Keith. Really, I think the 49ers should sign Cota but if they donít its because the team is already over crowded at the position and has faith that at least one of their safeties currently injured will be ready for the season.