49ers

Richard Sherman believes 49ers have chance 'to be really special' in 2019

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AP

Richard Sherman believes 49ers have chance 'to be really special' in 2019

SANTA CLARA — Richard Sherman is very excited to head into the offseason healthy, rather than worrying about rehabbing his Achilles like he was at this time last year. The 49ers cornerback is also a believer in the team's future, thinking that the front office will be smart during free agency and in the draft.

It took Sherman a little longer than expected to play without the pain and limitations of his repaired Achilles. Ending the season healthy comes as a welcome relief.

“I’m so excited,” Sherman said. “I think that’s going to be the biggest thing for me. To just have an offseason to work hard and to push my body and to let my muscles and tendons and ligaments recover like they should and then strengthen like they should.

“It will give myself a chance to do the drills. To pull the sled like I normally would and get my body back to where it normally is.”

Sherman finally started to feel closer to his old self in the last few weeks of the season. At that same time, there was personnel consistency on the defense and that led to them playing sound football.

Younger players on the 49ers had the chance to get valuable playing time under their belts, and Sherman believes that will help the unit be successful in 2019. He was just as positive heading into his first year with the team, but then 17 players went on injured reserve -- including stars Jimmy Garoppolo and Jerick McKinnon.

"I saw ’18 as the year we could play,” Sherman said. “But, I obviously didn’t foresee Jimmy being out for the season, Jet being out for the season, us losing three safeties, a starting corner, two linebackers.

“I definitely think that 2019 is a chance. Another year of experience for all those guys. I think it’s going to give us a chance to be really special.”

With over $62 million dollars in cap space, San Francisco could be very aggressive in free agency but Sherman believes that that general manager John Lynch and coach Kyle Shanahan won’t make any rash decisions.

“I’d like them to be smart and get us better,” Sherman said. “Obviously, I don’t make any decisions or call any shots, but I’m sure that Kyle and John are going to do their due diligence on everybody and put us in a better position than we have been this year.”

Sherman believes that the team already has important pieces in place for its success. He explained that standouts like defensive lineman DeForest Buckner and All-Pro tight end George Kittle have become important leaders in the locker room.

[RELATED: DeForest Buckner knows he can be even better in 2019]

“I think that’s essential to winning programs and championships,” Sherman said. “To be a winning organization, those have to be foundational pieces. Those guys set the standards and the precedent for other guys to follow.”

As long as players heed Shanahan’s message of not being complacent during the offseason, Sherman believes that the 49ers could have a very good defense.

“When we get back to 100%, we will be very stingy."

49ers seven-round NFL mock draft: Pick projections for each round

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AP

49ers seven-round NFL mock draft: Pick projections for each round

The 49ers have 184 players on their draft board.

It is a lower number of prospects than the 49ers have listed in the three seasons with John Lynch as general manager. Lynch said it speaks to the belief that it is going to be more difficult for a rookie to come in and win a roster spot this season.

[RELATED: 49ers strongly considering Williams at No. 2]

The 49ers have a scheduled six draft picks, a number that might change as the 49ers determine over the course of the three-day selection meeting whether to end up with fewer players due to trade-ups or attempt to move back to acquire more players.

If they stay where they’re scheduled to choose, the 49ers' draft could look something like this:

VIEW ENTIRE SEVEN-ROUND MOCK DRAFT HERE

Reggie Cobb's son will announce 49ers' second-round pick in NFL draft

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49ers.com

Reggie Cobb's son will announce 49ers' second-round pick in NFL draft

The 49ers have announced that DeMarcus Cobb, son of the late Reggie Cobb, will announce the team’s second-round pick of the 2019 NFL Draft alongside San Francisco alum Earl Cooper. 

General manager John Lynch opened up his pre-draft media availability with a heartfelt message about the longtime scout. He spoke about the effect that Cobb had, not only in the 49ers building, but around the league as well. 

“The outpouring from the league has just been unbelievable,” Lynch said. “The scouts, the coaches, GMs. He touched the NFL community and I think far beyond that. We’re finding out more and more each minute with the correspondence we’re having with people.” 

Lynch also hinted that DeMarcus would be involved in honoring his father with the team in some form. They will also keep his seat in the draft room empty the entire weekend. 

Cobb was the western regional scout for the 49ers for the past 11 seasons after spending six years with the Buccaneers as an area scout. He had a seven-season career in the NFL that included one year as a teammate of Lynch in Tampa Bay. 

Lynch elaborated on how Cobb’s work will influence how the 49ers draft evolves this week. 

[RELATED: 49ers strongly considering Williams with No. 2 overall pick]

“Reggie’s imprint will be on this draft,” Lynch said. “He worked incredibly hard, as he always did in the preparation for it. I’d love nothing more than to be able to take a player that he scouted hard. 

“We have enough cross checks and all that, that he’ll have his imprint on this draft in some form or fashion. Certainly, by the way, he just had a spirit about him that was something special.”