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49ers Releasing Darqueze Dennard Shows Confidence in Samuel Womack III

A surprising move the 49ers made Monday was releasing Darqueze Dennard, which indicates how confident they are in Samuel Womack III.

Trimming the roster down to 85 players has begun for the 49ers.

In a bit of shocking move, the 49ers released cornerback Darqueze Dennard after he seemed to be in the lead as the starting nickel defensive back. However, after the impressive outing from rookie Samuel Womack III against the Packers, it looks like Dennard was deemed expendable.

The 49ers releasing Dennard shows the confidence they have in Womack. Even if Dennard was just a little bit better than Womack, it is a wise decision to roll with Womack to allow him to develop. Plus, Dennard could remain a free agent for a while and always be there for the 49ers to bring in should the need arise.

"Credit to Womack, he's a smart player who's detailed in what he does," said DeMeco Ryans. "He studies off the field. He studies, he's asking questions on the field, in the meeting room, so he's a very smart guy who has what it takes to make it in his league just by his mental makeup. So that does give him a head up on guys, just because of the mental makeup and he cares about what he's doing. He cares about what he's putting on tape. So that's going to allow him to go far if he continues to do what he's doing.”

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The starting nickel role suddenly looks like it is Womack's. Now, I doubt the 49ers will tell him he is the starter until the preseason is over. It is to their benefit to keep dangling the job in front of him so he feels the need to continue to earn it. The last thing they want is for him to get a sense that he is fine where is at. It is why Ryans repeatedly said at his Sunday press conference that Womack needs to build off his performance against the Packers and improve.

"Womack, he's another guy who just has to continue to improve off of what he's done. Made two good plays, but he has to continue to improve his technique and everything that we ask him to do, he has to continue to get better and excel at all of those things.” 

I wouldn't doubt Womack for a single second that he doesn't win the starting slot corner role. He's answered the call from his coaches, but now he needs to take the next step by remaining consistent with it. Once he officially becomes the starter, then he will just add to the list of players the 49ers have hit on in the fifth round.