Jason Verrett's return bodes well for 49ers newcomers, DeMeco Ryans says

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49ers DC Ryans reveals how Verrett's return is helping newcomers originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

SANTA CLARA -- 49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans is excited to have Jason Verrett back at 49ers headquarters.

The veteran cornerback has had incredibly bad luck with injuries but when healthy has been one of the best in the game. Verrett has already been seen on the practice field watching and coaching up the secondary at OTA practices during the offseason.

“First and foremost, his presence, just being out there I think it lifts us all up,” Ryans said. “Just seeing J.V., just the energy that he brings. I'm excited just to see him around the building, just to see him talking with the guys. It's great having J.V. and his presence felt in that room.”

After considering retirement following an ACL injury that kept him off the field in 2019, Verrett came back to start 13 games for the 49ers in 2020. Then, in Week 1 of the 2021 season, suffered a second ACL injury that quickly ended his eighth season in the league.

“Everybody is pulling for J.V,” Ryans said. “He had a tough injury last year and we missed him a ton, so he's fighting to get back and he's doing everything in his power to knock out his rehab and be in the best shape possible for when he's able to come back.”

Defensive backs coach Cory Undlin has the same level of appreciation for the veteran cornerback and is thankful for Verrett’s involvement with the younger players in the room. The veteran might not be practicing yet but is involved as much as possible when he isn't rehabbing his knee.

Undlin shared that even when the group is watching film in the classroom, the clips used to show proper technique often are of Verrett.

Verrett is a valuable resource for younger defensive backs Ambry Thomas and Deommodore Lenoir as they enter their second year in the league. The nine-year vet has also quickly bonded with the team’s free agent signee Charvarius Ward, helping him get acclimated to Ryans' scheme.

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“Like everything we're asking these young guys to do, he's done it and he's done it at the highest level,” Ryans said. “If there's anybody those guys can learn from, it's J.V. So with him, how smart of a player he is, also with the talent, his ability is just off the charts.

“So if I'm one of those young guys, I'm definitely sitting by him, talking to him as much as I possibly can.”

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