Beloved 49ers DB Breaks Silence on Return After 1-Year Absence - Sport News

Beloved 49ers DB Breaks Silence on Return After 1-Year Absence

The San Francisco 49ers have not had veteran NFL cornerback Jason Verrett on hand in more than a year, but after signing him to the practice squad this week, the team welcomed him back warmly to the locker room on Wednesday. He said he felt like he had not missed a beat.

Jason Verrett, newly signed 49ers defensive back

“It speaks volumes, man. It speaks volumes to everybody here,” Verrett said on Wednesday about his reception. “From the top to the bottom of this organization, how they feel about me. I just try to reciprocate the same energy. Excited to be back, man, I missed all the guys. I am just ready to help them get on this run.”

How Verrett can help the 49ers at this point, though, could be a work in progress. He will help a secondary that is hurting because of a spate of injuries that has already cost the team safeties Talanoa Hufanga and George Odum and left them without Charvarius Ward, who is out with a groin injury.

The 49ers could be looking at a very young group in Week 15 against the Cardinals that includes third-year man Ambry Thomas starting with another third-year player, Deommodore Lenoir. Verrett might not make an appearance on the active roster but he still feels he can help his young new teammates.

“I feel like the way that Mooney (Ward) and D-Mo are playing there on the outside, it speaks volumes to the group that they have, and I am just happy I can be here to help mentor them, help elevate their game even more. But those two guys are playing tremendous,” Verrett said.

Jason Verrett Beloved on 49ers

One reason 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan wanted Jason Verrett back on the team is his institutional knowledge of the franchise, and the NFL in general. He played for the 49ers from 2019-21, but was limited to just 15 games in three years because of a wave of misfortune with injuries. But his attitude, work ethic and outlook impressed teammates and coaches.

Before his time with the 49ers, Verrett was a Pro Bowl corner for the Chargers in his second season, 2015. Then the injuries started. First it was his ACL, in 2016. Then it was another knee surgery in 2017. In 2018, it was a torn Achilles tendon suffered on the first day of training camp.

In 2019, he suffered a severe ankle injury in the season opener with the 49ers. He played 13 games in 2020, but tore his ACL in the 2021 opener, and has not played since. He was set to make his debut in November of 2022, but again tore his Achilles tendon.

JV Never Considered Retirement

Despite all of that, Jason Verrett said he never considered retiring, even at age 32.

“Just been my journey,” he said. “It has been a battle, man. One thing about me, I am always going to battle through. Not too worried about too many of the obstacles that I have faced, I take them head on. I am just happy that I have got an organization right here that still believes in me despite everything I have been through.”

The fact that the team believed in him was on display a month ago when Verrett first worked out for the team. Seven of his former teammates stayed late to watch his workout and support him.

That stuck with Jason Verrett.

“The guys who stayed and watched me do my workout, the relationship I got with these guys is bigger than just being in the locker room,” he said. “We got relationships outside of this. So I was definitely fortunate and blessed to have them watch me and it just shows what I mean to them and what they mean to me.”

 

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