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Cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon had the unenviable
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liny195 Offline

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Jan 2019
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#1 Cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon had the unenviable
task of covering star receiver Odell Beckham Jr. on some of Monday night’s game-defining plays in the San Francisco 49ers’ 27-23 loss to the New York Giants.Late In the third-quarter http://www.sanfrancisco49ersteamonline.c...tis-jersey , the Giants down 20-10, quarterback Eli Manning targeted Beckham along the sideline with Witherspoon in tow. The ball was just slightly overthrown, bouncing off the tip of the receivers’ fingers as he fell out of the back on the end zone. Manning went right back at Witherspoon on the very next play, this time completing the 20-yard touchdown to Beckham over the top of the 49ers’ cornerback. The play sparked the Giants’ eventual comeback.Witherspoon threw up his arms in disgust in the direction of safety Antone Exum Jr., seemingly placing the blame on the 49ers’ backup safety starting in place of the injured Jaquiski Tartt. Coach Kyle Shanahan was asked after the game if he was accepting of Witherspoon’s gesture.“No I am not.” Shanahan said. “Man up. Don’t put that on tape. We’ll deal with it when we come in.”Veteran cornerback Richard Sherman had a similar reaction when asked about Witherspoon’s frustrations, but also placed some of the blame on the defense’s inability to get the correct personnel on the field prior to the play.“You should never do that. That’s like a cardinal rule of football,” Sherman said at the podium. “You’re expecting guys to be where they’re supposed to be and, unfortunately, we didn’t get the personnel that we needed to on the field.”The 49ers’ embattled second-year cornerback was asked about Shanahan’s reaction to his on-field frustrations after the game in the locker room.“I was just mad at myself for allowing a touchdown. Can’t do that,” Witherspoon said. “I know that http://www.sanfrancisco49ersteamonline.c...ell-jersey , playing corner, I know I got to be better than that, and it’s something I got to improve on.”Witherspoon also drew a critical pass interference flag against Beckham during Giants’ game-winning drive. The 16-yard penalty turned a second-and-20 into an automatic first down. The Giants scored five plays later, taking the four-point lead with :53 seconds remaining.“I did.” Witherspoon said when asked if he disagreed with the call. “But I also disagree with me not turning my head because I could’ve had an opportunity for an interception on that play. Once again, just self-inflicted wounds.”Despite Witherspoon’s struggles in 2018, benched twice earlier in the season, the third-round pick in 2017 remains positive about his opportunity with the 49ers.“The season’s been a blessing,” Witherspoon said. “Every opportunity I have to play this game is an incredible opportunity for me. I’m appreciative of every single second of it. The season can’t go better than this because it’s all in God’s plan and I’m on His path and I’m doing it firmly and as a believer. So, I have no complaints.”Sherman: I think 49ers CB Ahkello Witherspoon will bounce back Things are different when you’re a rookie and expectations are markedly less. Knocks on you coming out of college are that you aren’t the best tackler and that the 49ers could have been reaching when they drafted you in the third round. Then you surprise everyone by playing lights out, and the following offseason http://www.sanfrancisco49ersteamonline.c...mas-jersey , veteran Richard Sherman joins the team and invites you to his first ever cornerback summit because he thinks you can handle it. Those are big shoes to fill and Ahkello Witherspoon has handled those expectations very well. Prior to the game facing the Lions, however, Witherspoon was limited with an ankle injury but was healthy enough to play. With Sherman on the other side of the field, Witherspoon was targeted much more heavily in the first two games than he was last season, and he knows it. It’s going to be a steep learning curve for the second year defensive back but he has a critical support system in Sherman, who had a few things to say in regards to the 24 hour rule for Witherspoon:Head coach Kyle Shanahan detailed the rotation of Witherspoon coming out of the game late in the fourth quarter:The 49ers have a huge challenge ahead facing a Chiefs offense that has put up 80 points in two weeks. Witherspoon would be best served to have both ankles 100 percent, but those types of things can linger. It is likely he will be limited during practice to start the week, but we can all rest assured that there will be intense film study to go over what needs to be adjusted. After the 24 hours pass, they are on to Kansas City.
01-25-2019 04:10 AM
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