The 49ers were ready to elevate cornerback Chris Culliver into the starting lineup a year ago. Then, he went down early in training camp with a season-ending torn ACL during a non-contact special-teams practice.
Again this offseason, the 49ers envision Culliver as a starter with Tarell Brown’s departure to the Raiders and the team’s decision to cut Carlos Rogers for an eventual salary-cap savings of $6.6 million. Tramaine Brock is the presumptive starter at the other cornerback position.
A source told CSNBayArea.com the 49ers plan to enter into talks with Culliver's representation on a contract extension this offseason. Culliver is entering the final season of his rookie deal.
At the NFL Scouting Combine last month, 49ers general manager Trent Baalke said he has been impressed with what he has seen from Culliver during his rehabilitation.
“He looks real good, and he’s working awfully hard,” Baalke said. “He’s at the facility every day and doing extra, and really doing a nice job. He’s matured a lot, both on the field and off the field, and it’s fun to watch.”
Culliver, a third-round draft pick from South Carolina in 2011, was the 49ers’ No. 3 cornerback in his first two seasons in the NFL.