What NFL executive believes is 49ers' biggest concern

Jason Verrett

Quarterback has been the 49ers' clear question mark ever since the 49ers traded up to the No. 3 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. 

With rookie Trey Lance recovering from a micro-chip fracture in his right index finger, it's clear as day quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo will start for the 49ers in their Week 1 matchup against the Detroit Lions. That likely was the plan all along, anyway. 

To one anonymous NFL executive, a position on the other side of the ball actually is the biggest concern for the 49ers. 

“Obviously, quarterback is the concern, what happens there, but they need a defensive presence on the back end," the executive said to The Athletic's Mike Sando. "Their pass rush is so good. If they are not able to stay healthy on their defensive line, that secondary is going to get exposed. Their corner situations sucked last year. Teams really feasted on them.

"Are they better? Maybe they make a move for Stephon Gilmore at some point. I think they need someone.”

What's tough is, we don't know when this executive made these comments.

The 49ers on Monday officially signed veteran cornerback Josh Norman. While Norman isn't the All-Pro he once was, he does bring depth and experience at the position. Still, behind Jason Verrett, Emmanuel Moseley and Norman, the 49ers are thin at the position, relying on late-round rookies to possibly make an impact. 

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Trading for Gilmore doesn't seem all too likely right now. However, general manager John Lynch certainly could have his eyes on another cornerback as the season continues before the NFL trade deadline. 

As quarterback receives all the headlines, cornerback will have a big spotlight this season for the 49ers, starting Sunday in Detroit.

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