The San Francisco 49ers added another player to their secondary by signing former Minnesota Vikings corner back Chris Cooks. This move pretty much secured the parting of ways between the 49ers and Tarell Brown. The 49ers got younger and more athletic in their secondary by adding Cooks.
At 27 years old and full of untapped potential, Cook is a trademark Trent Baalke signing. Cook is a long corner (6-2) and has some press ability. Ironically, the 49ers had some interest in Cook when he came out of the University of Virginia in 2010. His size is definitely intriguing and he surprised some when he ran a 4.46 at the 2010 NFL Scouting Combine. The Vikings drafted Cook in the second round with the 34th overall selection.
A lost attribute of Cook is his ability to move to safety if need be. That’s not to say that this is in the 49ers’ plans but as we know, defensive coordinator Vic Fangio does like his players to be versatile. Special Teams coach Brad Seely can also benefit from having an athlete like Cook featured on kickoff and punt return units. The punt return unit actually has a position that was vacated by the loss of Tarell Brown.
Cook wanted to come to the 49ers because of the winning team and history. He mentioned how he got good vibes from defensive backs coach, Ed Donatell. Additionally, Cook actually went to college with Ahmad Brooks for one year at Virginia.
The 49ers scheme seems to be one that will work better for the press man skill set that Cook has. Playing a lot of man coverage is not something that he got to do as much as he wanted to while he was in Minnesota. According to Cook, the 49ers coaching staff has already told him that they want him show his press skills and they want him to specialize in it.
Sometimes a change of scenery is the remedy for a talented athlete like Cook. San Francisco is the right place for him. He will be on a team that is player driven, a team that has excellent coaches that will have some of the best tip sheets and this team has an aggressive nature that goes hand in hand with a physical corner like Cook. He promises to work hard and looks at this as a second chance, a new lease on life. The contract is only a one year deal but if Cook is able to scratch the surface of his potential, it could blossom into a long term agreement and San Francisco can become his new home for years to come.